New Institutional Economics and Political Economy

Why Institutions Matter: Insights from Ronald Coase

Mary Shirley
Presentation by
Mary Shirley is the President of the Ronald Coase Institute, a non-profit organization working to improve knowledge of institutions and to build the capacity of young scholars to analyze and overcome institutional …

Noble laureate Ronald Coase was instrumental in exploring the effect transaction costs and property rights exerted on the structure and functioning of the economy as well as the influence of formal and informal institutions.  Coase maintained that economists should study real markets rather than theoretical ones and that economic theories should be the basis for empirical work, which would in turn lead to a re-evaluation of those theories.  By basing research and analysis on real world examples instead of relying on “blackboard economics,” economists could produce a range of alternative solutions to problems that would maximize the overall economic benefit.

Transcript available in EnglishFrench, and Spanish