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Going off the Rails: Global Capital and the Crisis of Legitimacy

ISBN: 978-0-470-85314-6
296 pages
March 2003
Going off the Rails: Global Capital and the Crisis of Legitimacy (047085314X) cover image
The capitalist model was developed in the 19th century and recent events have shown the difficulties of adapting this to the demands of the 21st century, in which human and social capital are of far greater importance than physical capital. In Going off the Rails, John Plender shows how corporate scandals, inflated boardroom pay, corporate governance disciplines and outmoded accountancy conventions have stretched the Anglo-American model to its limit and what the effects of this might be on globalisation and the capital markets.
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About the author.



1 The turn of the global tide.

2 The Third World ghetto.

3 Dr Pangloss comes to Wall Street.

4 Europe pulls up a drawbridge.


5 Uncreative destruction.

6 The just-in-time CEO.

7 Enron, alas.


8 Apocalypse later.

9 The semi-detached samurai.


10 The legitimacy crisis.

11 Putting the world to rights.


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John Plender is a senior editorial writer and columnist at the Financial Times and a regular current affairs broadcaster for the BBC and Channel Four. John has served on the UK government's Company Law Review steering group, and consults on corporate governance for the International Finance Corporation, the private sector lending and investing arm of the World Bank. In 1994 John Plender received the Wincott Award, Britain's premier prize for financial journalism.
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"... cleverly links globalisation and Anglo-American capitalism... if you want to understand what business is going through, it is an excellent place to start." (Management Today, March 2003)

'Plender, a respected Financial Times columnist and former chaiman of the corporate governance consultancy PIRC, analyses the crisis cogently both on macro and micro levels' (Director, April 2003)

"…His insightful and wide-ranging book is a must for anyone who wants to understand how global finance shapes the world…" (New Statesman, 21 April 2003)

"…Going off the Rails looks at the myriad ways in which those trusted to look after shareholders’ money have let them down…" (Financial Times, 5 May 2003)

“…An intelligent book…”(En, May/June 2003)

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Going off the Rails: Global Capital and the Crisis of Legitimacy (US $60.00)

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