THE LOGIC OF COLLECTIVE ACTION

Author: Mancur OLSON
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674041666
Format: PDF, Docs
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This book develops an original theory of group and organizational behavior that cuts across disciplinary lines and illustrates the theory with empirical and historical studies of particular organizations. Applying economic analysis to the subjects of the political scientist, sociologist, and economist, Mancur Olson examines the extent to which individuals who share a common interest find it in their individual interest to bear the costs of the organizational effort.

Harvard Economic Studies

Author: James K. Sebenius
Publisher:
ISBN:
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The Law of the Sea (LOS) treaty resuited from some of the most complicated multilateral negotiations ever conducted. Difficult bargaining produced a remarkably sophisticated agreement on the financial aspects of deep ocean mining and on the financing of a new international mining entity. This book analyzes those negotiations along with the abrupt U.S. rejection of their results. Building from this episode, it derives important and subtle general rules and propositions for reaching superior, sustainable agreements in complex bargaining situations. Sebenius shows how agreements were possible among the parties because and not in spite of differences in their values, expectations, and attitudes toward time and risk. He shows how linking separately intractable issues can generate a zone of possible agreement. He analyzes the extensive role of a computer model in the LOS talks. Finally, he argues that in many negotiations neither the issues nor the parties are fixed and develops analytic techniques that predict how the addition or deletion of either issues or parties may affect the process of reaching agreement.

The Rise and Decline of Nations

Author: Mancur Olson
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 0300157673
Format: PDF
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The years since World War II have seen rapid shifts in the relative positions of different countries and regions. Leading political economist Mancur Olson offers a new and compelling theory to explain these shifts in fortune and then tests his theory against evidence from many periods of history and many parts of the world."[T]his elegant, readable book. . . sets out to explain why economies succumb to the 'British disease,' the kind of stagnation and demoralization that is now sweeping Europe and North America. . . . A convincing book that could make a big difference in the way we think about modern economic problems."--Peter Passell, The New York Times Book Review"Schumpeter and Keynes would have hailed the insights Olson gives into the sicknesses of the modern mixed economy."--Paul A. Samuelson, Massachusetts Institute of Technology"One of the really important books in social science of the past half-century."--Scott Gordon, The Canadian Journal of Economics"The thesis of this brilliant book is that the longer a society enjoys political stability, the more likely it is to develop powerful special-interest lobbies that in turn make it less efficient economically."--Charles Peters, The Washington Monthly"Remarkable. The fundamental ideas are simple, yet they provide insight into a wide array of social and historical issues. . . . The Rise and Decline of Nations promises to be a subject of productive interdisciplinary argument for years to come."--Robert O. Keohane, Journal of Economic Literature"I urgently recommend it to all economists and to a great many non-economists."--Gordon Tullock, Public Choice"Olson's theory is illuminating and there is no doubt that The Rise and Decline of Nations will exert much influence on ideas and politics for many decades to come."--Pierre Lemieux, ReasonCo-winner of the 1983 American Political Science Association's Gladys M. Kammerer Award for the best book on U.S. national policy

Strength in Numbers

Author: Gunnar Trumbull
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674071778
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Consumers feel powerless in the face of big industry, and the dominant view of economic regulators agrees with them. Trumbull argues that this represents a misreading of the historical record and the core logic of interest representation. Weak interests, he reveals, quite often emerge the victors in policy battles, by forging unlikely alliances.

Governing the Commons

Author: Elinor Ostrom
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107569788
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Tackles one of the most enduring and contentious issues of positive political economy: common pool resource management.

Institutions Institutional Change and Economic Performance

Author: Douglass C. North
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139642960
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Continuing his groundbreaking analysis of economic structures, Douglass North develops an analytical framework for explaining the ways in which institutions and institutional change affect the performance of economies, both at a given time and over time. Institutions exist, he argues, due to the uncertainties involved in human interaction; they are the constraints devised to structure that interaction. Yet, institutions vary widely in their consequences for economic performance; some economies develop institutions that produce growth and development, while others develop institutions that produce stagnation. North first explores the nature of institutions and explains the role of transaction and production costs in their development. The second part of the book deals with institutional change. Institutions create the incentive structure in an economy, and organisations will be created to take advantage of the opportunities provided within a given institutional framework. North argues that the kinds of skills and knowledge fostered by the structure of an economy will shape the direction of change and gradually alter the institutional framework. He then explains how institutional development may lead to a path-dependent pattern of development. In the final part of the book, North explains the implications of this analysis for economic theory and economic history. He indicates how institutional analysis must be incorporated into neo-classical theory and explores the potential for the construction of a dynamic theory of long-term economic change. Douglass C. North is Director of the Center of Political Economy and Professor of Economics and History at Washington University in St. Louis. He is a past president of the Economic History Association and Western Economics Association and a Fellow, American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has written over sixty articles for a variety of journals and is the author of The Rise of the Western World: A New Economic History (CUP, 1973, with R.P. Thomas) and Structure and Change in Economic History (Norton, 1981). Professor North is included in Great Economists Since Keynes edited by M. Blaug (CUP, 1988 paperback ed.)

One for All

Author: Russell Hardin
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9781400821693
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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In a book that challenges the most widely held ideas of why individuals engage in collective conflict, Russell Hardin offers a timely, crucial explanation of group action in its most destructive forms. Contrary to those observers who attribute group violence to irrationality, primordial instinct, or complex psychology, Hardin uncovers a systematic exploitation of self-interest in the underpinnings of group identification and collective violence. Using examples from Mafia vendettas to ethnic violence in places such as Bosnia and Rwanda, he describes the social and economic circumstances that set this violence into motion. Hardin explains why hatred alone does not necessarily start wars but how leaders cultivate it to mobilize their people. He also reveals the thinking behind the preemptive strikes that contribute to much of the violence between groups, identifies the dangers of "particularist" communitarianism, and argues for government structures to prevent any ethnic or other group from having too much sway. Exploring conflict between groups such as Serbs and Croats, Hutu and Tutsi, Northern Irish Catholics and Protestants, Hardin vividly illustrates the danger that arises when individual and group interests merge. In these examples, groups of people have been governed by movements that managed to reflect their members' personal interests--mainly by striving for political and economic advances at the expense of other groups and by closing themselves off from society at large. The author concludes that we make a better and safer world if we design our social institutions to facilitate individual efforts to achieve personal goals than if we concentrate on the ethnic political makeup of our respective societies.

Collective Choice and Social Welfare

Author: A.K. Sen
Publisher: Elsevier
ISBN: 1483294579
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This book is concerned with the study of collective preference, in particular with the relationship between the objectives of social action and the preferences and aspirations of society's members. Professor Sen's approach is based on the assumption that the problem of collective choice cannot be satisfactorily discussed within the confines of economics. While collective choice forms a crucial aspect of economics, the subject pertains also to political science, the theory of the state, and to the theory of decision procedures. The author has therefore used material from these disciplines, plus philosophical aspects from ethics and the theory of justice.

How Institutions Evolve

Author: Kathleen Thelen
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139456199
Format: PDF, Mobi
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The institutional arrangements governing skill formation are widely seen as a key element in the institutional constellations defining 'varieties of capitalism' across the developed democracies. This book explores the origins and evolution of such institutions in four countries - Germany, Britain, the United States and Japan. It traces cross-national differences in contemporary training regimes back to the nineteenth century, and specifically to the character of the political settlement achieved among employers in skill-intensive industries, artisans, and early trade unions. The book also tracks evolution and change in training institutions over a century of development, uncovering important continuities through putative 'break points' in history. Crucially, it also provides insights into modes of institutional change that are incremental but cumulatively transformative. The study underscores the limits of the most prominent approaches to institutional change, and identifies the political processes through which the form and functions of institutions can be radically reconfigured over time.