Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Warfare at sea and profit: Corsairs, institutions and partnership companies

Economou, Emmanouel/Marios/Lazaros and Kyriazis, Nicholas and Metaxas, Theodore (2014): Warfare at sea and profit: Corsairs, institutions and partnership companies.

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Abstract

In the present paper we propose that in states with relatively weak central authorities, decision makers had to develop market oriented organisation solutions to successfully face a grave external threat, and these solutions proved to be efficient. Using an interdisciplinary approach that combines institutional theory, history and strategy, we analyse a case study, the use of corsairs (privateers) by England and the United Provinces (Dutch Republic) in the late 16th and early 17th centuries. We have found that the development of partnership companies went hand in hand for commercial and military purposes. English and Dutch privateers proved to be economically efficient and superior to the centrally planned war operations of the Spanish empire.

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