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Measuring Transaction Costs: Diverging Approaches, Contending Practices

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    (School of Global Studies, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287-5102, USA)

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    This paper brings order to the vast conceptual and empirical literature on measuring transaction costs. It critically reviews the broad and diverse landscape of the field of transaction costs measurement, ranging from financial economics, Williamsonian transaction cost economics, the transaction sector, non-marketed transaction costs, environmental economics and natural resource management, institutions and development, and the economics of identity. Three sources of and three approaches to transaction costs are identified. Though the literature as a whole appears in disarray, each research program is driven by its own internal dynamics between conceptual and empirical challenges. The paper proposes that a systematic investigation of the light that the concept of transaction cost sheds on the structure of production stands out as a most promising approach to move the field forward.

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    Article provided by World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd. in its journal Division of Labor & Transaction Costs.

    Volume (Year): 02 (2007)
    Issue (Month): 02 ()
    Pages: 111-146

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    Handle: RePEc:wsi:dltcxx:v:02:y:2007:i:02:p:111-146
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