Art in corporate governance: A Deweyan perspective on board experience

Authors: Nordberg, D.

Journal: Philosophy of Management

Publisher: Springer Verlag

ISSN: 1740-3812

Corporate governance sits at the intersection of many disciplines, among them law, business, management, finance, and accounting. The point of departure for large portions of this literature concerns the ugliness of greed, ambition, misdemeanors and malfeasance of corporations, their directors, and those actors who hold shares in them. This essay takes a rather different starting point. Drawing upon insights from a radically different field, it uses the discussion of aesthetics in Dewey’s treatise on art to ask what motivates directors to act in ways that constitute the attention and engagement that we associate with the effectiveness of boards. Using Dewey’s thinking about aesthetic experience, this paper compares it with accounts of the experience of organization boards, both in the literature and in the personal experience of the author. These observations point to need to reflect on motivation when considering both the practice of corporate governance and the policy frameworks in which it operates.

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