Institutional shrinkage: The deviant case of Swiss banking secrecy

Authors

  • Simon Steinlin,

    1. Master of Arts in Political Science, Universität Bern, Bern, Switzerland
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  • Christine Trampusch

    Corresponding author
    1. Chair of International Comparative Political Economy and Economic Sociology, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
      Christine Trampusch, Chair of International Comparative Political Economy and Economic Sociology, University of Cologne, Meister-Ekkehart-Strasse 11, 50935 Cologne, Germany. Email: christine.trampusch@uni-koeln.de
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Christine Trampusch, Chair of International Comparative Political Economy and Economic Sociology, University of Cologne, Meister-Ekkehart-Strasse 11, 50935 Cologne, Germany. Email: christine.trampusch@uni-koeln.de

Abstract

Using the Mahoney–Thelen causal model one would expect “layering” to be the dominant kind of institutional change affecting Swiss banking secrecy. Our research into governance in Swiss banking shows that it does not fit this theoretical model. Applying deviant case analysis we have refined our understanding of institutional change. We argue that the removal of rules and the momentum of pressure should be acknowledged when explaining variations of institutional change and we suggest that the processes of shrinkage should not be ignored.

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