Corporate Code of Ethics is an important tool for corporate governance. Reading that Code, it’s possible to know the rules that inspire enterprise’s activity, and in particular its culture. The role of corporate Code of Ethics is confirmed by several studies that have examined those Codes in order to increase understanding of their terms, contents, purposes, functions and effects. Regarding Italian listed companies’ choices in issuing Code of Ethics, an important influence was made by the Decree Law 231/2001, that introduced in Italy the possibility of punishing entities in the case of crimes committed in the interest or benefit of the entity by parties who, in itself, are placed in top positions. The new rules states the exemption from penal responsibility for enterprises that demonstrate to have adopted efficient Organizational and Management Models, able to prevent those illegal facts. So that, drafting this models has produced – in particular in Italian listed companies – a large diffusion of statements, generally called Code of Ethics, that describes admitted and forbidden behaviors according to what stated in Decree Law 231/2001. Paper aims to study the spread and availability of Codes of Ethics and Organizational and Management Models in Italy, so that evaluating the impulse given by Decree Law 231/2001 to the adoption of Codes of Ethics. The aim of the research is to investigate if that Codes could be an expression of the behaviors in terms of “values” that guide the firm or if, rather, those Codes are mainly adopted according to the rules introduced by the Decree Law 231/2001. After having conduct an empirical analysis on a sample of Italian listed companies, paper concludes with some reflections that confirm the strong relationship between Codes of Ethics and Organizational and Management Models introduced by Decree Law 231/2001.
La relazione tra Codici Etici e Decreto Legislativo 231/2001. Alcune riflessioni alla luce dell’analisi del contesto italiano / K. Furlotti; P.L. Marchini; V. Tibiletti. - In: RIVISTA ITALIANA DI RAGIONERIA E DI ECONOMIA AZIENDALE. - ISSN 1593-9154. - 7/8/9/2013:7/8/9(2013), pp. 301-316.
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