10New Citizens in Corporate Governance

THE PRINCIPLE OF DEMOCRACY

The corporation is a human community, and like thelarger community of which it is a part, it isbest governed democratically.

We lack real alternatives to the stockholder-focused corporation because virtually all public corporations have that design. There’s a word for this style of structural design, one used by my friend Anne, who is an architectural historian. The word is vernacular. It describes buildings that aren’t so much designed as simply built. Like a barn. Everyone knows what a barn looks like, so that’s what they build: the barn in their head. The vernacular barn.

We in America live with the vernacular corporation. We seem to design public corporations in our sleep, ...

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