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Updated A.Y. 2014-2015

Course on Business – Government Relationships
Dr. Andrea Bonomi Savignon

Course Objectives

Interdependence between business and government is an increasingly crucial factor in the development of economic activity. It appears in several different forms and is often a key variable in the competition between companies located in different geographical areas and between national systems, since it influences to a significant degree both public institutions and private enterprises in the pursuit of their own goals.
An understanding of business-government relations (BGRs), of their contribution to competitiveness, of the risks and opportunities they entail, and of how they can be managed are therefore key skills in the education of a manager willing to succeed in today’s economic environment. The importance of these skills is further enhanced by Globalisation, which makes it necessary to understand governmental decision-making processes across different institutional settings, and more and more often not only within the boundaries of individual nations, but also at the supranational level.

The course will explore the nature of business-government relationships (BGRs), moving from regulation and financial relationships towards public-private partnerships and lobbying. At the end of the course, students are expected to (1) understand how business-government relations (BGRs) influence both the strategies and performance of private enterprises, on the one side, and the public policy process, on the other, and (2) develop the skills necessary to successfully manage the business-government interaction.

Teaching Methods

Lectures and seminars; discussion of incidents and case studies; group assignments and presentations.

Exams and Grading

The exam will be oral.
Students attending the course will be guided in working on group projects on selected real-life BGR issues, to be presented and discussed in class.
The final grade will take into account the quality of the project, the presentation performance and the ability to interact and discuss during the presentation of lecture cases.

Course Materials

Selected chapters in:
- Coen D., Grant W. and Wilson G. (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Business and Government (2010). Oxford University Press
- Godwin K., Ainsworth S. H. and Godwin E. Lobbying and Policymaking. The Public Pursuit of Private Interests (2013). SAGE, London
Slides and additional readings will be provided after class by each lecturer.

Course Schedule

Thursday 13-16; Friday 15-18

February 19 -  Introduction to course structure and objectives. Disciplinary perspectives on business and government  (A. Bonomi Savignon)
February 20 - Approaches to market governance and comparative business systems  (A. Bonomi Savignon)
February 26 - Institutional relations: Evolution of state models and the competitiveness of national systems  (A. Bonomi Savignon)
February 27 - Outsourcing relations: Public-private partnerships and network governance  (D. Cepiku)
March 5 - Public – non profit relations and social innovation  (L. Corvo)
March 6 - Non – institutional relations: Lobbying  (A. Bonomi Savignon)
March 12 - Financial relations  (A. Bonomi Savignon)
March 13 - Competition policies in the EU context  (A. Bonomi Savignon)
March 19 - Testimony: EU funding and the business environment  
March 20 - Discussion of case studies  (A. Bonomi Savignon)