- The rise of activist investors and patterns of political responses: lessons on agency
- Socio-Economic Review
- Volume | Issue number
- 6 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)
This paper ventures an institutional explanation for distinct patterns of political contestation over the rise of activist investors such as private equity and hedge funds in Europe and North America. Taking issue with the dichotomous nature of the literature on varieties of capitalism (VoC) and the homogenizing assumptions of the literature on financialization, we argue that the specific patterns of politicization in the US, Germany and the Netherlands over the rise of activist investors result from the different institutional structurings of these countries’ political economies. Although our observations fit the current (re)discovery of agency in the VoC debate, we argue that they point in the direction of a less voluntaristic view of agency than seems fashionable today.
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