When it comes to corporate rule-breaking, data suggest that the US government frequently relies on “deferred-prosecution agreements” as a means of deterrence. Under these, a company acknowledges what it did was wrong, pays a fine, promises not to misbehave for a period of time—and is largely let off the hook. Columbia’s John C. Coffee says these have done little to deter future wrongdoing. On this episode of the Capitalisn’t podcast, Coffee joins hosts Luigi Zingales and Bethany McLean to discuss how to reform aspects of enforcement, such as self-reporting mechanisms, internal investigations, independent external auditors, whistleblowers, and even shame and humiliation.

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