An increasing number of studies in the last decade or so have emphasized the viability and persistence of distinctive systems of economic coordination and control in developed market economies. Over more or less the same period, the revival of institutional economics and evolutionary approaches to understanding the firm has focused attention on how firms create distinctive capabilities through establishing routines that coordinate complementary activities and skills
for particular strategic purposes. For much of the 1990s these two strands of research remained distinct. Those focusing on the institutional frameworks of market economies were primarily concerned with identifying complementarities between institutional arrangements that explained coherence and
continuity. On the other hand, those focusing on the dynamics of firm behaviour studied how firms develop new capacities and are able to learn new ways of doing things.
This book aims to bring together these approaches. It consists of a set of theoretically motivated and empirically informed chapters from a range of internationally known contributors to these debates. In their chapters, the authors show how institutions and firms evolve. Ideas of path dependency and complementarity of institutions are subjected to critical scrutiny both by reference to their own internal logic and to empirical examples. Varieties of institutional integration, the surprising
maintenance of 'deviant' or alternative traditions and processes, and the existence of unpredictable yet consequential policy options that can lead to breaks in path dependency are scrutinized with particular reference to how national and international firms may relate to institutions at various levels
as a diverse arena of potential resources rather than as a singular and determinant constraining force.
The book provides a set of theoretical and empirical challenges for researchers concerned with the relationship between national institutional contexts and firm dynamics. For those involved in teaching or studying at doctoral, Masters and higher level undergraduate courses, the book provides a structured entry into the debates about how institutions and firms are changing in the contemporary era.
INTRODUCTION ; 1. Changing Capitalisms? Internationalization, Institutionalization, and Systems of Economic Organization ; SECTION I: INSTITUTIONAL COMPLEMENTARITY, CONTRADICTION, AND CHANGE IN BUSINESS SYSTEMS ; 2. Path Dependency, Institutional Complementarity, and Change in National Business Systems ; 3. Degrees of Freedom: Rethinking the Institutional Analysis of Economic Change ; 4. Institutional Transformation and System Change: Changes the Corporate Governance of German Corporations ; 5. Systemic Perspectives on Business Practices and Institutions: A Plea Beyond Comparative Statics ; 6. Rethinking Path Dependency: The Crooked Path of Institutional Change in Postwar Germany ; 7. Complementarity and Fit in the Study of Comparative Capitalisms ; 8. How National are Business Systems? The Role of Different State Types and Complemntary Institutions in Constructing Homogeneous Systems of Economic Coordination and Control ; SECTION 2: CHANGING FIRM CAPABILITIES WITHIN AND ACROSS INSTITUTIONAL FRAMEWORKS ; 9. The Limited Development of Transnational Organizational Capabilities in Multinational Companies: Institutional Constraints on International Authority Sharing and Careers ; 10. Internationalization and Capability Development in Regulated Professional Service Firms ; 11. Emerging Strategies and Forms of Governance in the Components Industry in High Wage Areas ; 12. Change in Coordinated Market Economies: The Case of Finland and Nokia ; AFTERWORD ; 13. Modelling National Business Systesm and the Civilizing Process ; 14. Institutional Complementarities, Path Dependency, and the Dynamics of Firms