This Article, for a collection in which authors were asked to “imagine a world without corporate criminal liability,” specifies the material questions that should be addressed if debate about the doctrine is to progress past longstanding and oft-repeated assertions. The strongest case for corporate criminal liability is based on the potential for its unique reputational effects to contribute to the prevention and deterrence of crime within corporations. Further research should take up a variety of unanswered questions about those effects having to do with mechanisms and audiences. The relevant inquiries are both theoretical and empirical. Answers will lie in further understanding of organizational and individual behavior more than in familiar models of the firm and deterrence that have largely shaped the literature to date.
Thursday, September 15, 2022