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Exchange and Specialisation as a Discovery Process

Author

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  • Sean Crockett
  • VernonL. Smith
  • BartJ. Wilson

Abstract

In this article we study the performance of an economy that can support specialisation if the participants develop and follow some system of exchange. We define a closed economy in which the participants must discover the ability to exchange, implement it, and ascertain what they are comparatively advantaged in producing. Many of our participants demonstrate the ability to find comparative advantage, capture gains from trade and effectively choose production that is consistent with the choices of others. We explore various treatments to provide insight into the conditions that foster the growth of specialisation and exchange within this weak institutional framework. Copyright © The Author(s). Journal compilation © Royal Economic Society 2009.

Suggested Citation

  • Sean Crockett & VernonL. Smith & BartJ. Wilson, 2009. "Exchange and Specialisation as a Discovery Process," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(539), pages 1162-1188, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:119:y:2009:i:539:p:1162-1188
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Sean Crockett & VernonL. Smith & BartJ. Wilson, 2009. "Exchange and Specialisation as a Discovery Process," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(539), pages 1162-1188, July.
    2. Greif, Avner, 1993. "Contract Enforceability and Economic Institutions in Early Trade: the Maghribi Traders' Coalition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(3), pages 525-548, June.
    3. Daniel Houser & David Reiley & Michael Urbancic, 2004. "Checking Out Temptation: An Natural Experiment with Purchases at the Grocery Register," Working Papers 1001, George Mason University, Interdisciplinary Center for Economic Science, revised Nov 2008.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Sean Crockett & VernonL. Smith & BartJ. Wilson, 2009. "Exchange and Specialisation as a Discovery Process," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(539), pages 1162-1188, July.
    2. Jason Shachat & Zhenxuan Zhang, 2017. "The Hayek Hypothesis and Long‐run Competitive Equilibrium: An Experimental Investigation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 127(599), pages 199-228, February.
    3. Sean Crockett, 2013. "Price Dynamics In General Equilibrium Experiments," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(3), pages 421-438, July.
    4. Taylor Jaworski & Vernon Smith & Bart Wilson, 2010. "Discovering Economics in the Classroom with Experimental Economics and the Scottish Enlightenment," International Review of Economic Education, Economics Network, University of Bristol, vol. 9(2), pages 10-33.
    5. Bart J. Wilson, 2012. "Contra Private Fairness," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(2), pages 407-435, April.
    6. Cary Deck, 2009. "An experimental analysis of cooperation and productivity in the trust game," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 12(1), pages 1-11, March.
    7. Tyler Watts, 2010. "Arbitrage and knowledge," The Review of Austrian Economics, Springer;Society for the Development of Austrian Economics, vol. 23(1), pages 79-96, March.
    8. Joy Buchanan & Bart Wilson, 2014. "An experiment on protecting intellectual property," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 17(4), pages 691-716, December.
    9. Olga A. Rud & Jean Paul Rabanal & Manizha Sharifova, 2018. "An experiment on the efficiency of bilateral exchange under incomplete markets," Working Papers 123, Peruvian Economic Association.
    10. Meier, Stephan & Stephenson, Matthew, 2015. "Culture of Trust and Division of Labor," IZA Discussion Papers 8974, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    11. Emin Karagözoglu & Martin G. Kocher, 2015. "Bargaining under Time Pressure," CESifo Working Paper Series 5685, CESifo Group Munich.
    12. Bart J. Wilson & Taylor Jaworski & Karl E. Schurter & Andrew Smyth, 2012. "The Ecological and Civil Mainsprings of Property: An Experimental Economic History of Whalers' Rules of Capture," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 28(4), pages 617-656, October.
    13. Kimbrough, Erik O. & Wilson, Bart J., 2013. "Insiders, outsiders, and the adaptability of informal rules to ecological shocks," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(C), pages 29-40.
    14. Bart Wilson, 2015. "Further towards a theory of the emergence of property," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 163(1), pages 201-222, April.
    15. Kimbrough, Erik O. & Smith, Vernon L. & Wilson, Bart J., 2010. "Exchange, theft, and the social formation of property," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 74(3), pages 206-229, June.
    16. Kimbrough, Erik O., 2011. "Heuristic learning and the discovery of specialization and exchange," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 491-511, April.
    17. Zhao, Liang & Zhu, Xian Chen, 2007. "A Discussion on Empirical Micro-Bases of Hayek’s Methodological Individualism," MPRA Paper 3862, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Taylor Jaworski & Bart J. Wilson, 2013. "Go West Young Man: Self-Selection and Endogenous Property Rights," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 79(4), pages 886-904, April.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • D51 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Exchange and Production Economies
    • F10 - International Economics - - Trade - - - General

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