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The history of transaction cost economics and its recent developments

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  • Lukasz, Hardt

Abstract

The emergence of transaction cost economics (TCE) in the early 1970s with Oliver Williamson’s successful reconciliation of the so called neoclassical approach with Herbert Simon’s organizational theory can be considered an important part of the first cognitive turn in economics. The development of TCE until the late 1980s was particularly marked by treating the firm as an avoider of negative frictions, i.e., of transaction costs. However, since the 1990s TCE has been enriched by various approaches stressing the role of the firm in creating positive value, e.g., the literature on modularity. Hence, a second cognitive turn has taken place: the firm is no longer only seen as an avoider of negative costs but also as a creator of positive knowledge.

Suggested Citation

  • Lukasz, Hardt, 2009. "The history of transaction cost economics and its recent developments," MPRA Paper 17989, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:17989
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    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/17989/1/MPRA_paper_17989.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Langlois, Richard N., 2002. "Modularity in technology and organization," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 19-37, September.
    2. Williamson, Oliver E, 1973. "Markets and Hierarchies: Some Elementary Considerations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 63(2), pages 316-325, May.
    3. Klaes, Matthias, 2000. "The History of the Concept of Transaction Costs: Neglected Aspects," Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Cambridge University Press, vol. 22(02), pages 191-216, June.
    4. Nicolai J. Foss, "undated". "Simon's Grand Theme and the Economics of Organization," IVS/CBS Working Papers 2001-9, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy, Copenhagen Business School.
    5. Williamson, Oliver E, 1971. "The Vertical Integration of Production: Market Failure Considerations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(2), pages 112-123, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lukasz Hardt, 2011. "An inquiry into the explanatory virtues of transaction cost economics," The Journal of Philosophical Economics, Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies, The Journal of Philosophical Economics, vol. 5(1), pages 120-147, November.
    2. Duarte N. Leite & Sandra T. Silva & Oscar Afonso, 2014. "Institutions, Economics And The Development Quest," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 28(3), pages 491-515, July.
    3. Marta Gancarczyk, 2015. "Proces wzrostu przedsiębiorstwa w świetle podejścia zasobowego i teorii kosztów transakcyjnych," Gospodarka Narodowa, Warsaw School of Economics, issue 5, pages 5-31.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    transaction cost economics; Oliver Williamson; theory of the firm; modularity literature; cognitive turn;

    JEL classification:

    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • B21 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - - - Microeconomics
    • B31 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought: Individuals - - - Individuals

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