Skip to main content

Ownership in the Twenty-First Century: Closing Thoughts

  • Chapter
  • First Online:
Value Creation for Owners and Directors

Abstract

The world keeps changing. Every business is in transition. We are all owners of the Earth, which we inherit from our parents and leave as a legacy to our children. One thing is now certain: the Earth will increasingly impose itself as a major stakeholder, and we must integrate and prepare for this major change. In this context, we discuss ESG and Sustainability using the models and frameworks presented in the book.

Looking to the future, we conclude the book by venturing to state that companies with clearly defined owners should be able to more effectively look and prepare for the long term. Such organizations will be more successful in governing the innovation and value creation challenges and opportunities that our century gasps for.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this chapter

Subscribe and save

Springer+ Basic
EUR 32.99 /Month
  • Get 10 units per month
  • Download Article/Chapter or Ebook
  • 1 Unit = 1 Article or 1 Chapter
  • Cancel anytime
Subscribe now

Buy Now

Chapter
USD 29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
eBook
USD 54.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as EPUB and PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
Softcover Book
USD 64.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Compact, lightweight edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info
Hardcover Book
USD 69.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Durable hardcover edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Purchases are for personal use only

Institutional subscriptions

Notes

  1. 1.

    Randall E. Parker (Ed.), Reflections on the Great Depression, Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing, 2002.

  2. 2.

    Milton Friedman on Big Business, Big Government. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_T0WF-uCWg.

  3. 3.

    Adam Smith, An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, London, UK, 1776 (in public domain).

  4. 4.

    Karl Marx, Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts of 1844, Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1959.

  5. 5.

    Stephen A. Ross, “The economic theory of agency: The principal’s problem,” American Economic Review 62(2):134–139, 1973.

  6. 6.

    Barry M. Mitnick, “Fiduciary rationality and public policy: The theory of agency and some consequences,” Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, 1973.

  7. 7.

    Michael C. Jensen and William H. Meckling, “Theory of the firm: Managerial behavior, agency costs and ownership structure,” Journal of Financial Economics 3(4): 305–360, 1976.

  8. 8.

    We define shareholder supremacy differently from the notion of shareholder primacy, which is a theory that states that the firm should be run and governed primarily for shareholders. Friedman in his famous New York Times Magazine article formulated this as follows: “… in his capacity as a corporate executive, the manager is the agent of the individuals who own the corporation ... and his primary responsibility is to them.” Friedman never mentioned boards, nor addressed the point that most shareholders do not agree.

  9. 9.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/08/09/climate/climate-change-report-ipcc-un.html.

  10. 10.

    Milton Friedman, “The Social Responsibility of Business is to Increase its Profits,” The New York Times Magazine, September 13, 1970.

  11. 11.

    John Elkington. Cannibals with Forks: The Triple Bottom Line of 21st Century Business. Wiley. 1999.

  12. 12.

    https://www.patagonia.com/static/on/demandware.static/-/Library-Sites-PatagoniaShared/default/dw824fac0f/PDF-US/2017-BCORP-pages_022218.pdf.

  13. 13.

    https://www.patagonia.com/our-footprint/.

  14. 14.

    https://www.ft.com/content/1564e99a-5766-11e8-806a-808d194ffb75.

  15. 15.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/business-62906853.

  16. 16.

    https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-1989-05-11-we-3605-story.html.

  17. 17.

    https://www.novonordisk.com/careers/working-at-novo-nordisk.html.

  18. 18.

    https://www.novonordisk.com/careers/working-at-novo-nordisk.html.

  19. 19.

    https://www.novonordisk.com/about/corporate-governance/the-novo-nordisk-foundation.html.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Massimo Massa .

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

Copyright information

© 2023 The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG

About this chapter

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this chapter

Massa, M., Taraporevala, K., Van der Heyden, L. (2023). Ownership in the Twenty-First Century: Closing Thoughts. In: Value Creation for Owners and Directors. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-19726-0_16

Download citation

Publish with us

Policies and ethics