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Institutions and Economic Theory: The Contribution of the New Institutional Economics (Economics, Cognition, and Society)

Опубликовано на портале: 19-09-2005
Michigan: University of Michigan Press, 2005
A much-needed exploration of the New Institutional Economics, or NIE, including a critical assessment of its central theoretical contributions since the field's early beginnings in the 1960s, is this book's objective. It traces the development of major ideas about the genesis and significance of institutions as these ideas have been presented in the NIE. Given the fundamental understanding underlying work in this new area of research--that transactions involve the use of real resources and have costs--the book views the NIE as an amalgam of transaction-cost economics, property-rights analysis, and contract theory.

Efforts are made to explain how the various theoretical strands discussed in the NIE literature fit into the general fabric of modern institutionalism, and how the new concepts put forward can be applied to institutional analysis. Since the new institutionalist approach contrasts sharply with that of the traditional neoclassical model, special attention is given to elucidating the points of difference between the two. And, along these lines, a final chapter deals with the troubling question of whether neoinstitutionalist theory can be advanced by efforts to extend or generalize neoclassical theory.

The second edition assesses some of the major refinements, extensions, and useful applications that have developed in neoinstitutionalist thought in recent years. More attention is given to the overlap between the New Institutional Economics and developments in economic history and political science. In addition to updated references, new material includes analysis of parallel developments in the field of economic sociology and its attacks on representatives of the NIE as well as an explanation of the institution-as-an-equilibrium-of-game approach.

The book will be essential reading for economists attracted to the NIE approach. In addition, scholars from such disciplines as political science, sociology, and law will find the work useful as the NIE continues to gain wide academic acceptance.

Chapter 1. Introductory Observations1
1.1. Some Basic Assumptions and Terms2
1.2. The Strange World of Costless Transitions8
1.3. The Ideal Type of the Classical Liberal State11
1.4. The Ideal Type of Market Socialism12
1.5. Constructed or Spontaneous Orders14
1.6. The Work of the Invisible Hand Can Be Accelerated15
1.7. Rational Incompleteness17
1.8. Enforcement19
1.9. The Political Process21
1.10. Agency22
1.11. Institutional Stability23
1.12. Once More with Feeling25
1.13. The New Institutional Economics and Modern Institutionalism29
1.14. Some Notes on the History of the Old Institutional Economics33
1.15. Suggested Readings for Chapter 137
Chapter 2. Transaction Costs39
2.1. The Concept of Transaction41
2.2. Transaction Costs: Illustrations and Attempts at Definition42
2.3. Guesstimating the Size of Transaction Costs49
2.4. Modeling Transaction Costs: The Activity “Transaction” 54
2.5. Some Notes on the Development of the Transaction Cost Literature62
2.6. Suggested Readings fur Chapter 2 67
Chapter 3. Absolute Property Rights: Ownership of Physical Objects 69
3.1. Property Rights Approach: Some Basic Concepts 71
3.2. Property Rights: Illustrations and Attempts at Definition 76
3.3. Property in Physical Objects: The Private Property Issue85
3.4. Common Pool Resources 98
3.5. The Emergence of Property Rights 104
3.6. The Economic Analysis of Property Rights: Some Notes on the Literature114
3.7. Suggested Readings for Chapter 3 119
Chapter 4. Relative Property Rights: Contractual Obligations 121
4.1. Basic Principles of Contractual Obligations123
4.2. Diverse Types of Contractual Obligations 127
4.3. Some Elements of Contract Theory from the Economist’s Viewpoint140
4.4. Three Types of Contract Theory 147
4.5. Resume 169
4.6. The Economics of Contract Law and Contractual Behavior: Some Notes on the Literature172
4.7. Suggested Readings for Chapter 4 176
Chapter 5. Contract Theory 179
5.1. Overview of the Types of Contract Theory to be Discussed181
5.2. Managerial Theory of the Finn: The Expense-Preference Model183
5.3. The Principal-Agent Model: Moral Hazard186
5.4. The Principal-Agent Model: Adverse Selection 202
5.5. Implicit Contracts 227
5.6. The Incomplete Contract Model232
5.7. Self-Enforcing Agreements239
5.8. Looking Back246
5.9. Bibliographic Notes on Formal Contract Theory250
5.10. Suggested Readings for Chapter 5262
Chapter 6. The New Institutional Economics Applied to Markets, Firms, and the State: General Remarks265
6.1. The Elementary Rules of a Private Ownership Economy266
6.2. General Remarks on Organizations: The Firm, the Market and the State269
6.3. A Brief Guide to the Literature on Order and Organization278
6.4. Suggested Readings for Chapter 6281
Chapter 7. The New Institutional Economics of the Market283
7.1. The Market as Organization284
7.2. On Price Rigidity285
7.3. Market Organization as a Result of Market Cooperation287
7.4. Some Views of Neoinstitutionalists on Market Organization291
7.5. A Brief Guide to the Literature on Market Organization314
7.6. Suggested Readings for Chapter 7319
Chapter 8. The New Institutional Economics of the Firm321
8.1. The Orthodox Neoclassical Firm321
8.2. The Incentive to Integrate328
8.3. The Limits of Integration336
8.4. Ownership and Control342
8.5. Institutional Models in the Tradition of the Neoclassical Theory of the Firm 354
8.6. The Traditional Soviet Firm366
8.7. The Socialist Labor-Managed Firm375
8.8. Codetermination389
8.9. The New Institutional Economics of the Firm: Forerunners and First Steps404
8.10. The New Institutional Economics of the Firm: Summary and Main Literature Beyond Coase405
8.11. Suggested Readings for Chapter 8410
Chapter 9. The New Institutional Economics of the State413
9.1. A Simple Neoclassical Theory of the State414
9.2. The Role of Political Institutions417
9.3. Political Markets420
9.4. International Relations423
9.5. A Brief Guide to the Literature on the Economics of the State and International Relations430
9.6. Suggested Readings for Chapter 9434
Chapter 10. Future Development of the New Institutional Economics435
10.1. Institutionalism as Extended Neoclassical Theory439
10.2. The Initial Approach Reconsidered441
10.3. The Basis of a New Paradigm464
10.4. Modern Institutionalism: The Opportunities for Progress 477
Author Index539
Subject Index547

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