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The ‘Coase Theorem’ vs. Coase theorem proper: How an error emerged and why it remained uncorrected so long

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  • Yalcintas, Altug

Abstract

The question of what is the 'Coase Theorem?' has no simple answer. The majority of articles covering a variety of issues on the 'Coase Theorem' still misrepresent the main message of Coase (1960). The remaining controversy over the 'Coase Theorem' is because the literature on Coase (1960) has been locked into a pathway which was set out by Stigler’s 1996 book, The Theory of Price. Even almost 50 years after the publication of Coase’s original article, the consequence of the initial condition under which Coase’s contribution was first formulated (Stigler 1966) is not perfectly eliminated. The evolution of the 'Coase Theorem' has now become an example to intellectual path dependence in economics.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 37936.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:37936

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Keywords: Ronald Coase; 'The Problem of Social Cost' (1960); The 'Coase Theorem; ' George Stigler; Replication Failure; Intellectual Path Dependence;

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  1. Halpin, Andrew, 2007. "Disproving The Coase Theorem?," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 23(03), pages 321-341, November.
  2. Usher, Dan, 1998. "The Coase theorem is tautological, incoherent or wrong," Economics Letters, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 3-11, October.
  3. Yalcintas, Altug, 2010. "Intellectual Paths And Pathologies: How Small Events In Scholarly Life Accidentally Grow Big," Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge University Press, vol. 32(04), pages 621-622, December.
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  5. Frech, H E, III, 1979. "The Extended Coase Theorem and Long Run Equilibrium: The Nonequivalence of Liability Rules and Property Rights," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, Western Economic Association International, vol. 17(2), pages 254-68, April.
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  11. Charness, Gary & Frechette, Guillaume R. & Qin, Cheng-Zhong, 2007. "Endogenous transfers in the Prisoner's Dilemma game: An experimental test of cooperation and coordination," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 287-306, August.
  12. Paul Krugman, 1990. "Increasing Returns and Economic Geography," NBER Working Papers 3275, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  14. Coase, R H, 1974. "The Market for Goods and the Market for Ideas," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 64(2), pages 384-91, May.
  15. Hoffman, Elizabeth & Spitzer, Matthew L, 1982. "The Coase Theorem: Some Experimental Tests," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25(1), pages 73-98, April.
  16. Mark Cohen & V. Santhakumar, 2007. "Information Disclosure as Environmental Regulation: A Theoretical Analysis," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 37(3), pages 599-620, July.
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