Brussels 2015

The Small, Medium-Sized and Large Company in Law and Economic Practice (Middle Ages-Nineteenth Century)

Brussels, 21-22 May, 2015

Preliminary programme


The goal of this workshop is to bring together scholars who have worked on business ventures, and to address law and economic practice from the Middle Ages until c. 1900. We particularly invite for papers that assess differences with regard to the size of partnerships and companies. Over the past years, more attention has been paid to limited and general partnerships and to organizational laws containing models for small enterprises (e.g. the sprl and GmbH). It seems that both in legal and economic practice, and for all periods mentioned, smaller companies mattered more than was previously thought, and even in periods in which corporations existed. In view of this, many ideas about larger companies can be reconsidered. Topics that can be addressed with regard to small, medium-sized and/or large companies are a.o. legal personhood, limited liability, corporate finance, and corporate governance.

The workshop is the second in a series on the history of commercial law, organized during the 2014-2017 period in Helsinki, Brussels and Frankfurt. The conferences will be organized in the framework of the project “The making of commercial law: common practices and national legal rules from the early modern period to the modern period”.


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