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The Tragedy of the Commons and the Myth of a Private Property Solution

November 1st, 2013 humas No comments

By: Amy Sinden, Temple University – James E. Beasley School of Law, April 7, 2006

Solusinya ?

The central question of environmental law is “how much?” How much pollution should we emit into the air and water? How much resource exploitation should we engage in? While for other “how much” questions our society tends to rely (at least in theory) on the market, when it comes to environmental harms, the tragedy of the commons frequently causes the market to fail – that is, to get the “how much” question wrong.

According to generally accepted wisdom, there are two potential solutions to the tragedy of the commons:

  1. government regulation, or
  2. privatization.

When the U.S. environmental movement began in the 1970s, government regulation seemed the obvious choice. But in recent years, intellectual fashions have changed, and privatization has become the preferred solution. The privatization solution, however, is a myth that exists, if at all, only in a world of theory.

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Property Rights for “Sesame Street”

October 29th, 2013 humas 2 comments

Diterjemahkan secara bebas oleh rusmanik dari: Janet Beales Kaidantzis, Property Rights for “Sesame Street”

Perlu Hak Kepemilikan …

Pernahkah melihat anak-anak bertengkar memperebutkan mainan? Percekcokan seperti itu juga lumrah dalam rumah tangga Katherine Hussman Klemp. Dalam Sesame Street Parent’s Guide, dia menceritakan bagaimana dia berhasil menciptakan perdamaian delapan anak di keluarganya dengan menetapkan hak kepemilikan atas sebuah mainan.

Sebagaimana halnya ibu muda lainnya, Klemp sering membelikan anak-anaknya bermacam-macam permainan. “Awalnya aku jarang menyerahkan secara spesifik suatu jenis mainan tertentu kepada seorang anak tertentu,” katanya.

Lalu apa yang terjadi? “Setelah beberapa waktu, saya melihat dengan nyata bahwa ketidakjelasan kepemilikan sangat mudah menyebabkan pertengkaran diantara kedelapan anakku. Jika semuanya milik semua orang, maka tiap anak merasa memiliki hak untuk menggunakannya sesukanya” katanya.

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Economic Governance: The Organization of Cooperation

October 26th, 2013 humas No comments

E. Ostrom

Traditionally, economic theory has by and large been a theory of markets or, more precisely, about market prices. However, there are at least two reasons why economic science should extend beyond price theory.

First, markets do not function properly unless suitable contracts can be formulated and enforced. Hence, we need to understand the institutions that support markets. Second, considerable economic activity takes place outside of markets – within households, firms, associations, agencies, and other organizations. Hence, we need theories to explain why these entities exist and how they work.

2009 Laureates have been instrumental in establishing economic governance as a field of research. Elinor Ostrom has provided evidence on the rules and enforcement mechanisms that govern the exploitation of common pools by associations of users. Oliver Williamson has proposed a theory to clarify why some transactions take place inside firms and not in markets. Both scholars have greatly enhanced our understanding of non-market institutions.

Baca selengkapnya dari: “The Prize in Economic Sciences 2009 – Popular Information“.  Baca juga: “The Prize in Economic Sciences 2009 – Illustrated Presentation“. Nobelprize.org. Nobel Media AB 2013. Web. 26 Oct 2013.

The Approach of Institutional Economics

October 23rd, 2013 humas No comments

Geoffrey M. Hodgson

TODAY, THE TERM “new institutional economics” is in widespread use and is associated with a vast literature. Clearly, the temporal adjective in the adopted title of this broad set of postwar theories and approaches has been intended to demarcate the “new institutional economics” from the “old” institutional economics of Thorstein Veblen, John Commons, and Wesley Mitchell.

This earlier institutionalism had actually been dominant in economics departments in American universities just after the First World War. Despite this, little detailed reference has been made by leading exponents of the “new” institutional economics to this predecessor. Two factors may help to explain this oversight. The first is that the history of economic thought is currently a much neglected subdiscipline, and there is now widespread unfamiliarity with the “old” American institutionalism, despite its favored geographic location and accessible language.

The second reason is that since its decline in America after 1930 the “old” institutionalism has been repeatedly written off, and is dismissed for failing to provide a systematic and viable approach to economic theory. It is also widely—and wrongly—believed that institutionalism was essentially anti-theoretical and descriptive.

Download: Hodgson, Geoffrey M. (1998). “The Approach of Institutional Economics,Journal of Economic Literature, 36(1), pp. 166-192 (close Bookmarks).

The Institutional Structure of Production

October 20th, 2013 humas 5 comments

Ronald Coase

In my long life I have known some great economists but I have never counted myself among their number nor walked in their company. I have made no innovations in high theory.

My contribution to economics has been to urge the inclusion in our analysis of features of the economic system so obvious that, like the postman in G.K. Chesterton’s Father Brown tale, The Invisible Man, they have tended to be overlooked.

Nonetheless, once included in the analysis, they will, as I believe, bring about a complete change in the structure of economic theory, at least in what is called price theory or microeconomics.

What I have done is to show the importance for the working of the economic system of what may be termed the institutional structure of production.

In this lecture I shall explain why, in my view, these features of the economic system were ignored and why their recognition will lead to a change in the way we analyse the working of the economic system and in the way we think about economic policy, changes which are already beginning to occur.

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