For decades, Europe has sought to become more financially integrated with the United States and thus European legal institutions, regulatory, governance and accounting practices have faced pressures to adapt to international competitive markets. Against this backdrop, European corporate governance systems have been criticized as being less efficient than the Anglo-American market based systems. This textbook examines the unique dimensions and qualities of European corporate governance. Reforms of key institutions, the doctrine of shareholder value and the seemingly irresistible growth of CEO power and reward are critically analyzed. The book brings out the richness of European corporate governance systems, as well as highlighting historical weaknesses that will require further work for a sustainable corporate governance environment in the future. In light of the most severe financial crisis since the 1930s, this intelligent look at European corporate governance is a vital textbook for courses on corporate governance and a great supplementary textbook on a host of business, management and accounting classes.