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The Firm, the Market, and the Law


  • Coase, R. H.


Few other economists have been read and cited as often as R.H. Coase has been, even though, as he admits, "most economists have a different way of looking at economic problems and do not share my conception of the nature of our subject." Coase's particular interest has been that part of economic theory that deals with firms, industries, and markets—what is known as price theory or microeconomics. He has always urged his fellow economists to examine the foundations on which their theory exists, and this volume collects some of his classic articles probing those very foundations. "The Nature of the Firm" (1937) introduced the then-revolutionary concept of transaction costs into economic theory. "The Problem of Social Cost" (1960) further developed this concept, emphasizing the effect of the law on the working of the economic system. The remaining papers and new introductory essay clarify and extend Coarse's arguments and address his critics. "These essays bear rereading. Coase's careful attention to actual institutions not only offers deep insight into economics but also provides the best argument for Coase's methodological position. The clarity of the exposition and the elegance of the style also make them a pleasure to read and a model worthy of emulation."—Lewis A. Kornhauser, Journal of Economic Literature Ronald H. Coase was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economic Science in 1991.

Suggested Citation

  • Coase, R. H., 1990. "The Firm, the Market, and the Law," University of Chicago Press Economics Books, University of Chicago Press, number 9780226111018, Febrero.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:bkecon:9780226111018

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    Cited by:

    1. Thomas Grebel & Andreas Pyka & Horst Hanusch, 2004. "An evolutionary approach to the theory of entrepreneurship," Chapters, in: John Foster & Werner Hölzl (ed.), Applied Evolutionary Economics and Complex Systems, chapter 7, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    2. Vitols, Sigurt, 1995. "Corporate governance versus economic governance: banks and industrial restructuring in the US and Germany," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Economic Change and Employment FS I 95-310, WZB Berlin Social Science Center.
    3. Bingyuan Hsiung, 2013. "Guanxi: Personal connections in Chinese society," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 17-40, April.
    4. Jiang, Liangliang & Lin, Chen & Lin, Ping, 2014. "The determinants of pollution levels: Firm-level evidence from Chinese manufacturing," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 118-142.
    5. Manuel Willington & Eduardo Saavedra, 2011. "Eficiencia Productiva y Asignación de Cuotas de Pesca en Chile: Teorema de Coase y Asimetrías de Información," ILADES-UAH Working Papers inv264, Universidad Alberto Hurtado/School of Economics and Business.
    6. Reuben Soto, Sergio, 2012. "Fundamentos hipotéticos para proyectos de investigación sobre la crisis económica contemporánea [Hypothetical foundations for research projects on the contemporary economic crisis]," MPRA Paper 39591, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Lasserre, Pierre, 1994. "La Genèse, les coûts de transaction et l’économie de l’environnement," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 70(4), pages 383-397, décembre.
    8. Sergio, Reuben, 2012. "Fundamentos hipotéticos para investigar la crisis económica contemporánea [Hypothetical foundations to investigate the contemporary economic crisis]," MPRA Paper 43067, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 14 Nov 2012.
    9. Daniyar Baizakov & Anuarbek Kari, 2016. "Shadow Economic Activities: Assessment and Minimization Problems," International Journal of Economics and Financial Issues, Econjournals, vol. 6(4), pages 1515-1524.
    10. Masahiro Kawai & Henrik Schmiegelow, 2013. "Financial Crisis as a Catalyst of Legal Reforms : The Case of Asia," Governance Working Papers 23852, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
    11. Fred L Smith Jr., 2005. "Jared Diamond and the Terrible Too's," Energy & Environment, , vol. 16(3-4), pages 423-439, July.
    12. Mary M. Shirley, 2016. "Ronald Coase: the makings of an iconoclast," Chapters, in: Claude Ménard & Elodie Bertrand (ed.), The Elgar Companion to Ronald H. Coase, chapter 1, pages 7-17, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    13. Ullberg, Eskil, 2015. "Trade in Ideas: Performance and Behavioural Properties of Markets in Patents with Two-part Tariff," Ratio Working Papers 261, The Ratio Institute.
    14. Vasyl Lagutin & Alina Boiko & Diana Shkuropadska, 2020. "Institutional Conditions For Ensuring Resilience Of National Economy: On The Example Of Ukraine," Baltic Journal of Economic Studies, Publishing house "Baltija Publishing", vol. 6(3).
    15. Anthony U. EGBU & Edith C. Pat-MBANO & Kalu A. OBIALO, 2012. "pUBLIC GOODS PROVISION: INFORMAL RESPONSE TO GOVERNMENT FAILURE IN THE CITIES OF NIGERIA," Theoretical and Empirical Researches in Urban Management, Research Centre in Public Administration and Public Services, Bucharest, Romania, vol. 7(2), pages 67-78, May.
    16. Tereza Šímová & Josef Šíma, 2012. "In Search Of Empirical Content – The Austrian Way To Go Beyond Pure Theory," Romanian Economic Business Review, Romanian-American University, vol. 7(1), pages 50-59, March.
    17. Brian Singleton-Green, 2014. "Should financial reporting reflect firms’ business models? What accounting can learn from the economic theory of the firm," Journal of Management & Governance, Springer;Accademia Italiana di Economia Aziendale (AIDEA), vol. 18(3), pages 697-706, August.
    18. Åsbjørn Melkevik, 2019. "A Theory of Business Eunomics: The Means–Ends Relation in Business Ethics," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 160(1), pages 293-305, November.
    19. Terence Lam & Keith Gale, 2014. "Highway maintenance: impact of framework agreements upon project financial performance," Construction Management and Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(5), pages 460-472, May.
    20. Roth, Steffen, 2009. "The Markets of Society. A Research Design on Trans-Economic Exchange Rates," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 209-224.

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