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Institutional Change and the Social Sources of American Economic Empire: Beyond Stylised Facts



The three volumes commented on here present some of the very best political economy and economic sociology scholarship on change within the US economy, as well as US-led changes in the international political economy. This review article seeks to identify the key contributions made by these works and how they improve our understanding of institutional change within the US economy. At a time when international relations and political science is populated by critiques of US empire, this article submits that understanding the ‘economic taproot’ of US power is essential in exposing its enduring character and weaknesses.

Gourevitch, P. A. and Shinn, J. J. (2005) Political Power and Corporate Control: The New Global Politics of Corporate Governance. Princeton NJ: Princeton University Press.

Sinclair, T. J. (2005) The New Masters of Capital: American Bond Rating Agencies and the Politics of Creditworthiness. Ithaca NY: Cornell University Press.

Whitford, J. (2005) The New Old Economy: Networks, Institutions, and the Organizational Transformation of American Manufacturing. Oxford: Oxford University Press.