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Ostrom and Ostrom on the Quest for Meaning in Public Choice


  • Elinor Ostrom
  • Vincent Ostrom


The logical foundations of constitutional government are of basic importance if people are to be self-governing. All forms of political order are Faustian bargains subject to numerous risks. If constitutional choice applies to all patterns of human association, the complexity of associated relationships and the potential threats to the viability of associated relationships in the aggregate exceed the limits of human cognition. The development of analytical capabilities depends on using frameworks, theories, and models for formulating hypotheses about conditions and consequences, undertaking diagnostic assessments, and conceptualizing and designing alternative possibilities. The relationship of ideas to deeds in an experimental epistemology is necessary to achieve a warrantable art and science of association. Copyright 2004 American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Inc..

Suggested Citation

  • Elinor Ostrom & Vincent Ostrom, 2004. "Ostrom and Ostrom on the Quest for Meaning in Public Choice," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(1), pages 105-147, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ajecsc:v:63:y:2004:i:1:p:105-147

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    Cited by:

    1. Giada De Marchi & Giulia Lucertini & Alexis Tsoukiàs, 2012. "From Evidence-Based Policy-Making to Policy Analytics," Working Papers hal-00875488, HAL.
    2. Paul Aligica, 2015. "Public Administration, Public Choice and the Ostroms: the achievements, the failure, the promise," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 163(1), pages 111-127, April.
    3. repec:spr:annopr:v:236:y:2016:i:1:d:10.1007_s10479-014-1578-6 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Hezri, Adnan A. & Dovers, Stephen R., 2006. "Sustainability indicators, policy and governance: Issues for ecological economics," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 86-99, November.
    5. Matilde Casuccio & Enrico Giovannetti, 2008. "The Cooperative Movement in Bolivia: Fair Trade in Amazzonia Nuts," Department of Economics 0592, University of Modena and Reggio E., Faculty of Economics "Marco Biagi".

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