Business and Politics
ISSN / EISSN : 1369-5258 / 1469-3569
Published by: Cambridge University Press (CUP) (10.1017)
Total articles ≅ 570
Latest articles in this journal
Business and Politics pp 1-17; https://doi.org/10.1017/bap.2021.16
Recent developments in the international banking system, especially the 2007–9 crisis and subsequent wave of postcrisis regulation, have drawn increasing attention to the structural power of banks and banking systems. States need a functioning financial system to ensure the overall health of their economies, so states must shape policy to protect their financial firms. National financial systems may be dominated either by banks or by capital markets. In states where banks dominate provision of capital, states must shape policy to protect their banks because of their structural importance, independent of any lobbying or other direct action on the part of banks to exercise instrumental power. The entangling of structural and instrumental power means studying differences in structural power requires either careful case-study work or cross-national comparison of responses to a common shock. The implementation of the 2011 Basel III Accords provides just such an opportunity. This article offers a quantitative analysis of a new dataset of implementation of Basel III components in the Basel Committee on Banking Stability member states from 2011 to 2019 and demonstrates the structural power of banks in bank-based systems to accelerate implementation of favorable policies and slow implementation of unfavorable ones.
Business and Politics pp 1-21; https://doi.org/10.1017/bap.2021.11
Why do states participate in bilateral investment treaties (BITs)? In this article, I examine the role of indirect investment on BIT formation. Indirect investment flows are an important aspect of the global investment regime that are underexamined by research focused on direct flows only. Indirect flows play an important role in affecting incentives for BIT participation because firms channel investment through intermediary destinations to take advantage of existing BITs. I argue that governments are more likely to participate in BITs when states expect to access groups of capital exporting states through second order links. When selecting BIT partners, states evaluate expected indirect foreign direct investment (FDI) flows by considering characteristics of a potential partner's second order FDI partners. States are thus more likely to participate in BITs when expectations for indirect flows are high. I use a variety of analyses to demonstrate evidence in favor of my hypotheses. I find evidence that indirect flows affect the likelihood of BIT formation and increase dyadic FDI flows. This research provides a novel explanation for BIT formation and contributes to research on indirect capital flows, treaty shopping and BIT formation.
Business and Politics pp 1-18; https://doi.org/10.1017/bap.2021.13
The Philippines was among the fastest-growing economies averaging within the 6.5 percent GDP growth in the past five years. However, the COVID-19 crisis brought major disruptions to the Philippine economy as growth, employment, and overall productivity fell into recession levels along with the declaration of a nationwide lockdown. As the pandemic resulted in a series of business closures, supply chain breakdowns, and massive job cuts, the private sector was forced to confront the challenges brought by the pandemic including its threat to business continuity and survival. This article presents the private sector's assessment of the pandemic's impact on the Philippine economy along with their views on the national pandemic response and the extent of public-private collaborations in countering the effects of COVID-19. Following the insights and experiences shared by industry leaders and other corporate executives, this article also discusses pivots in corporate strategy along with a significant shift in corporate mindset toward new ways of doing business and fulfilling their responsibilities in society.
Business and Politics pp 1-17; https://doi.org/10.1017/bap.2021.12
Currency is the fundamental economic technology that makes promises credible among actors within and across societies. From shells, to metals, to paper, the technology of money has continually evolved to meet the changing needs of human society. The twenty-first century is witnessing yet another evolution in the technology of money: digital currencies. Although political economy scholarship has begun to focus on digital currencies, this research has largely focused on single early examples like Bitcoin. I argue that this generally narrow focus has obscured important degrees of variation among digital currencies and, by extension, has omitted important lines of research on digital currencies as a familiar evolution in the technology of money. In this article, I revisit the history of digital currencies with explicit attention to not only economic inefficiencies but also political power structures and offer a new typology for theoretically organizing digital currencies along dimensions relevant to practitioners of political economy. I illustrate that variation along these typological dimensions produces important differences among different digital currencies and, relatedly, I explore the implications this has for digital currencies’ externalities and governance demands. Drawing on this typology, I conclude with a proposed research agenda for the political economy of digital currencies.
Business and Politics, Volume 23; https://doi.org/10.1017/bap.2021.9
Business and Politics pp 1-18; https://doi.org/10.1017/bap.2021.7
Research on firm-level corporate political activity often treats firm-government interactions as independent of the market competition between firms. Yet, firms that compete in the market will consider rivals when making strategic nonmarket decisions. Ignoring market rivalry when studying nonmarket strategy introduces fundamental endogeneity problems and potentially overlooks a central mechanism explaining firms’ political choices. Our study demonstrates this by investigating the strategic nonmarket interactions of large US tobacco manufacturers, a case study that is independently interesting. From 1992 to 2008, the US tobacco industry experienced dramatic upheaval in its business environment as regulatory authority shifted from the state to federal level, under the Food and Drug Administration. Using firm-candidate–cycle data, a complete information campaign contributions game, played in the nonmarket environment, is estimated for two of the United States’ largest tobacco manufacturers. Results demonstrate that, rather than acting in isolation, US tobacco firms strategically coordinated their firm-level political campaign contributions.
Business and Politics pp 1-18; https://doi.org/10.1017/bap.2021.6
The private prison industry is a multi-million-dollar industry that has increasingly profited from the detention of undocumented immigrants. As a government contractor, therefore, the industry has a natural interest in government decision making, including legislation that can affect its expansion into immigrant detention. In this article, we examine the relationship between campaign donations made on behalf of the private prison industry and an untested form of position taking—bill cosponsorship—in the US House of Representatives. We hypothesize the private prison industry will reward House members for taking positions that benefit the industry. We also hypothesize the private prison industry will also reward House members who incur greater political risk by taking positions out of sync with the party. To test our hypotheses, we focus on punitive immigration legislation that has the potential to increase the supply of immigrant detainees over the course of eight years. We find support for our second hypothesis, that private prison companies are more likely to reward House Democrats who cosponsor punitive immigration policies even after accounting for possible endogeneity. The findings have important implications regarding the relationship between House members and private interests.
Business and Politics pp 1-18; https://doi.org/10.1017/bap.2021.8
Firms and governments often negotiate economic development deals, such as tax abatements, with limited transparency, using exceptions to public records laws or other strategies for nondisclosure. In this article we explore the motivations of firms for keeping economic development deals out of the public eye. We explore legal challenges to public records requests for deal-specific, company-specific participation in a state economic development incentive program. By examining applications for participation in a major state economic program, the Texas Enterprise Fund, we find that a company is more likely to challenge a formal public records request if it has renegotiated the terms of the award to reduce its job-creation obligations. We interpret this as companies challenging transparency when they have avoided being penalized for noncompliance by engaging in nonpublic renegotiations. These results provide evidence regarding those conditions that prompt firms to challenge transparency and illustrate some of the limitations of safeguards such as clawbacks (or incentive-recapture provisions) when such reforms aren't coupled with robust transparency mechanisms. We speculate that the main motivation for these challenges is to limit scrutiny of these deals that could lead to backlashes against future economic development agreements.
Business and Politics, Volume 23, pp 406-418; https://doi.org/10.1017/bap.2021.4
In the competition between American states for economic development, about half of American states offer lower levels of labor rights in the form of “right-to-work” (RTW) laws. RTW states often tout their advantages in competing for foreign investment, but do foreign companies really want weaker labor regulation? Many foreign firms locate production in the United States not to lower labor costs but for other reasons, such as proximity to consumers or to employ highly skilled workers, implying that differences across labor regulations within rich countries may be declining in importance. In this article, we investigate the relationship between RTW laws and greenfield foreign direct investments. In particular, we explore recent RTW changes across two states, Indiana and Michigan, controlling for national trends in foreign investment. Adopting RTW increases foreign investment in manufacturing in both states, but Michigan's RTW law is associated with gains in service-sector projects even while Indiana's is not. While RTW may attract more manufacturing, it is not enough to generate broad-based gains across the economy.
Business and Politics, Volume 23, pp 419-437; https://doi.org/10.1017/bap.2021.5
State-owned enterprises (SOEs) retain a strong presence in many economies around the world. How do governments manage these firms given their dual economic and political nature? Many states use authority over executive appointments as a key means of governing SOEs. We analyze the nature of this “personnel power” by assessing patterns in SOE leaders’ political mobility in China, the country with the largest state-owned sector. Using logit and multinomial models on an original dataset of central SOE leaders’ attributes and company information from 2003 to 2017, we measure the effects of economic performance and political connectedness on leaders’ likelihood of staying in power. We find that leaders of well-performing firms and those with patronage ties to elites in charge of their evaluation are more likely to stay in office. These findings suggest that states can leverage personnel power in pursuit of economic and political stability when SOE management is highly politically integrated.