Research in this workstream focuses on the interplay between law, regulation and governance in relation to the legal structure of private economic entities, particularly alternatives to the standard joint stock corporation form. These alternatives range from a renascence of interest (particularly in light of the rise of digital technology) in both older legal forms such as the cooperative, as well as new legal entity forms developed in response to the rise of interest in social enterprise in the UK, US and Canada (for example benefit corporations and community interest companies). We research these issues from a broad interdisciplinary perspective that encompasses the economic, political, social and cultural effects of institutional experimentation in this area.
The research engages with alternative corporate forms from four directions in more depth:
1.In relation to debates over whether Australia could benefit from developing a specific legal entity form for social enterprise, working closely withthe Legal Models Working Group.
2.In relation to the contribution of 'green' social enterprise to a more sustainable and climate-resilient economy, working in parallel with the recent rise of platform cooperativism
Professor Morgan and Dr. Kuch co-hosted two workshops in late July 2015 aimed at sustainability enthusiasts, which sought to tease out which pieces of the regulatory puzzles warrant most attention from researchers, and to help design practical support in response.