Increasing returns: historiographic issues and path dependence
Writing a history of the analysis of increasing returns in economics is qualitatively different from the usual cumulative history of knowledge, as exemplified by the history of perfectly competitive analysis. The history of increasing returns is much less continuous. The reason for this irregular history lies, in my view, in the analytic nature of the subject. I concentrate on the recent history of the implications of increasing returns for path dependence in economic development. Foreshadowed by Veblen (1915) the topic was made explicit by Paul David in some theoretical analyses of topics in economic history (1971, 1975) and then by subsequent papers by David and by Brian Arthur in the 1980s. Contemporaneously, Farrell, Katz, Saloner, and Shapiro came to parallel conclusions in a very specific industrial organization context marked by network externalities.
Volume (Year): 7 (2000)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.tandfonline.com/REJH20|
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.tandfonline.com/pricing/journal/REJH20|
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Young, Allyn A., 1928. "Increasing Returns and Economic Progress," History of Economic Thought Articles, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, vol. 38, pages 527-542.
- Romer, Paul M, 1986.
"Increasing Returns and Long-run Growth,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(5), pages 1002-37, October.
- Katz, Michael L & Shapiro, Carl, 1985. "Network Externalities, Competition, and Compatibility," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(3), pages 424-40, June.
- Joseph Farrell & Garth Saloner, 1986.
"Installed Base and Compatibility, With Implications for Product Preannouncements,"
411, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Joseph Farrell & Garth Saloner, 1985. "Installed Base and Compatibility With Implications for Product Preannouncements," Working papers 385, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Katz, Michael L & Shapiro, Carl, 1986. "Technology Adoption in the Presence of Network Externalities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 822-41, August.
- Joseph Farrell & Garth Saloner, 1985.
"Standardization, Compatibility, and Innovation,"
RAND Journal of Economics,
The RAND Corporation, vol. 16(1), pages 70-83, Spring.
- David, Paul A, 1985. "Clio and the Economics of QWERTY," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(2), pages 332-37, May.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:taf:eujhet:v:7:y:2000:i:2:p:171-180. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Michael McNulty)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.