- The global corporate elite after the financial crisis: evidence from the transnational network of interlocking directorates
- Global Networks
- Volume | Issue number
- 16 | 1
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)
What impact did the recent financial crisis have on the corporate elite's international network? Has corporate governance taken on an essentially national structure or have transnational networks remained robust? We investigate this issue by comparing the networks of interlocking directorates among the 176 largest corporations in the world economy in 1976, 1996, 2006 and 2013. We find that corporate elites have not retrenched into their national business communities: the transnational network increased in relative importance and remained largely intact during the crisis lasting from 2006 to 2013. However, this network does not depend - as it used to do - on a small number of big linkers but on a growing number of single linkers. The network has become less hierarchical. As a group, the corporate elite has become more transnational in character. We see this as indicative of a recomposition of the corporate elite from a national to a transnational orientation.
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