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DDRO 25A04 - Contemporary Issues in Corporate Law & Governance

Type d'enseignement : Seminar

Semester : Autumn 2018-2019

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English



Course Description

This course will introduce students to current issues relating to corporations, increasingly important actors in global matters. The course will begin with an introduction to US corporate law, including discussion of the question “what is a corporation” and of the sources of corporate law. This section will include an exploration of the corporate governance structure, the rights of shareholders and the powers of boards of directors and officers. The introductory section will also introduce students to the basic capital structure of corporations, including the differences between equity and debt, and how variations of this structure can affect corporate governance. Part I will conclude with a discussion of the effects of government shareholding on corporate governance. The course will, then, focus on recent debates concerning corporate “personhood,” including whether corporations should enjoy constitutional rights, such as free speech, or be subject to criminal prosecution. Part II of the course also includes a brief exploration of Corporate Social Responsibility, which seeks to define standards for corporate behavior, in particular, in the fields of human rights, labor rights and the environment.


HENDERSON, Felicia A. (Business Development Consultant, Member of NY Bar)

Pedagogical format

The course consists of 12 two-hour sessions, each of which will include a lecture and a period for open discussion.

Course validation

Completion of reading assignments and participation in class discussion are essential. Accordingly, a portion of each student's grade will be based on the extent to which the student's class participation demonstrates a thoughtful review of the assigned reading materials. The remaining portion of each student's grade will be based on two shorter assignments and on a final exam.


The course materials are entirely in English and include excerpts of selected books and academic articles as defined in the course syllabus. The assigned readings will be available on Moodle. The reading assignments for each session will include questions for reflection and will require approximately three hours of work outside of class assuming good reading ability in English.

Required reading

  • Contemporary Issues in Corporate Law and Governance: Reims – Spring 2013- 2017 (core law course for second-year law majors); Reims – Spring 2018, Paris – Fall 2013- 2017 (second-year law elective)
  • Introduction to Organizational Behavior: Reims – Spring 2017-2018, Fall 2015
  • Gender and other Challenges for Law: Reims – Fall 2013- 2017 (second-year comparative equality law/ gender studies offering)
  • Law and the Corporation: Reims – Spring 2012, Paris – Fall 2012 (second-year law elective)
  • Law in a World of Multiple Legal Orders: Reims – Fall 2011 and 2012 (seminar groups for first-year core law course)