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Naturalizing institutions: Evolutionary principles and application on the case of money

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  • Herrmann-Pillath, Carsten

Abstract

In recent extensions of the Darwinian paradigm into economics, the replicator-interactor duality looms large. I propose a strictly naturalistic approach to this duality in the context of the theory of institutions, which means that its use is seen as being always and necessarily dependent on identifying a physical realization. I introduce a general framework for the analysis of institutions, which synthesizes Searle's and Aoki's theories, especially with regard to the role of public representations (signs) in the coordination of actions, and the function of cognitive processes that underly rule-following as a behavioral disposition. This allows to conceive institutions as causal circuits that connect the population-level dynamics of interactions with cognitive phenomena on the individual level. Those cognitive phenomena ultimately root in neuronal structures. So, I draw on a critical restatement of the concept of the meme by Aunger to propose a new conceptualization of the replicator in the context of institutions, namely, the replicator is a causal conjunction between signs and neuronal structures which undergirds the dispositions that generate rule-following actions. Signs, in turn, are outcomes of population-level interactions. I apply this framework on the case of money, analyzing the emotions that go along with the use of money, and presenting a stylized account of the emergence of money in terms of the naturalized Searle-Aoki model. In this view, money is a neuronally anchored metaphor for emotions relating with social exchange and reciprocity. Money as a meme is physically realized in a replicator which is a causal conjunction of money artefacts and money emotions. --

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Frankfurt School of Finance and Management in its series Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series with number 182.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:fsfmwp:182

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Keywords: Generalized Darwinism; institutions; replicator/interactor; Searle; Aoki; naturalism; memes; emotions; money;

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References

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  1. Herrmann-Pillath, Carsten, 2009. "A neurolinguistic approach to performativity in economics," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 123, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  2. Christina Bannier, 2007. "Heterogeneous multiple bank financing: does it reduce inefficient credit-renegotiation incidences?," Financial Markets and Portfolio Management, Springer, vol. 21(4), pages 445-470, December.
  3. Hirsch, Christian & Bannier, Christina E., 2007. "The economics of rating watchlists: evidence from rating changes," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 88, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  4. Libman, Alexander, 2010. "Constitutions, regulations, and taxes: Contradictions of different aspects of decentralization," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 138, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  5. Hankir, Yassin & Rauch, Christian & Umber, Marc P., 2009. "It's the market power, stupid! Stock return patterns in international bank M&A," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 129, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  6. Scholl, Wolfgang & Schanz, Kay-Michael, 2008. "Aktionärsschutz in der AG falsch verstanden? Die Leica-Entscheidung des LG Frankfurt am Main," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 104, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  7. Abrar, Kamyar, 2006. "Fusionskontrolle in dynamischen Netzsektoren am Beispiel des Breitbandkabelsektors: zugleich ein kritischer Beitrag zur Kartellrechtsdogmatik des Bundeskartellamts nach Iesy/Ish und TC/Ish und sektors," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 75, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  8. Herrmann-Pillath, Carsten, 2008. "Neuroeconomics, naturalism and language," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 108, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  9. Bannier, Christina E., 2009. "Is there a hold-up benefit in heterogeneous multiple bank financing?," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 117, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  10. Bannier, Christina E. & Feess, Eberhard, 2010. "When high-powered incentive contracts reduce performance: choking under pressure as a screening device," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 135, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  11. Wollersheim, Jutta & Barthel, Erich, 2008. "Kulturunterschiede bei Mergers & Acquisitions: Entwicklung eines Konzeptes zur Durchführung einer Cultural Due Diligence," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 94, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  12. Herrmann-Pillath, Carsten, 2009. "Kulturelle Hybridisierung und Wirtschaftstransformation in China," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 115, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  13. Bannier, Christina E. & Grote, Michael H., 2008. "Equity gap? - Which equity gap? On the financing structure of Germany's Mittelstand," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 106, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  14. Herrmann-Pillath, Carsten & Libman, Alexander & Xiaofan, Yu, 2010. "State and market integration in China: A spatial econometrics approach to 'local protectionism'," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 137, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  15. Roßbach, Peter, 2009. "Die Rolle des Internets als Informationsbeschaffungsmedium in Banken," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 120, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  16. Herrmann-Pillath, Carsten, 2010. "Entropy, function and evolution: naturalizing Peircian semiosis," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 134, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
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Cited by:
  1. Dietmar Harhoff & Elisabeth Mueller & John Van Reenen, 2013. "What are the channels for technology sourcing? Panel data evidence from German companies," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 51524, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  2. Harhoff, Dietmar, 2012. "What are the Channels for Technology Sourcing? Panel Data Evidence from German Companies," Discussion Papers in Business Administration 14327, University of Munich, Munich School of Management.
  3. Boeing, Philipp & Mueller, Elisabeth & Sandner, Philipp, 2012. "What makes Chinese firms productive? Learning from indigenous and foreign sources of knowledge," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 196, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  4. Alexander Libman & Vladimir Kozlov & André Schultz, 2012. "Roving Bandits in Action: Outside Option and Governmental Predation in Autocracies," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 65(4), pages 526-562, November.
  5. Inklaar, Robert & Koetter, Michael & Noth, Felix, 2012. "Who's afraid of big bad banks? Bank competition, SME, and industry growth," Frankfurt School - Working Paper Series 197, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management.
  6. Böing, Philipp & Müller, Elisabeth, 2012. "Technological Capabilities of Chinese Enterprises: Who is Going to Compete Abroad?," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 62081, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

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