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Ownership and Control: A Small-World Analysis

Conyon, Martin and Muldoon, M (2008) Ownership and Control: A Small-World Analysis. Advances in Strategic Management, 25. pp. 31-66. ISSN 0742-3322

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    Abstract

    In this paper we investigate the ownership and control of British firms using recent techniques from computational graph theory. In particular, we analyze the `small-world' properties of UK company ownership and the corporate elite. A `small-world' is characterized by short `path-lengths' (actors are linked by a short chain of acquaintances) and high `clustering' (one's friends tend to be friends in their own right). We find that the network of both ownership and control can be characterized as a small-world. We simulate a set of corporate worlds using newly introduced random-graph models of Chung and Lu. In general, we reject the hypothesis that the corporate world of ownership and control is generated by a random graph model. The network structure of ownership and boards is decidedly more `clubby' than would be expected by chance, suggesting the presence of additional social structure not captured by the random graph model. In addition, we find that financial institutions are important and give rise to different network topologies.

    Item Type: Article
    Journal or Publication Title: Advances in Strategic Management
    Subjects: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5601 Accounting
    Departments: Lancaster University Management School > Accounting & Finance
    ID Code: 53924
    Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
    Deposited On: 26 Jun 2012 09:37
    Refereed?: Yes
    Published?: Published
    Last Modified: 09 Apr 2014 23:23
    Identification Number:
    URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/53924

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