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War for Profit: Macroculture, Corsairs and partnership companies

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  • Kyriazis, Nicholas
  • Metaxas, Theodore

Abstract

In the present paper we propose that in states with relatively weak central authorities, decision makers had to develop market oriented organisation solutions to successfully face a grave external threat, and these solutions proved to be efficient. Using an interdisciplinary approach that combines institutional theory, history and strategy, we analyse the concept of macroculture and then a case study, the use of corsairs (privateers) by England and the United Provinces (Dutch Republic) in the late 16th and early 17th centuries. We also propose that the development of partnership companies went hand in hand for commercial and military purposes. Lastly, we suggest that a market led decentralised type of war as practiced by English and Dutch privateers proved to be economically efficient and superior to the centrally planed war operations of the Spanish empire.

Suggested Citation

  • Kyriazis, Nicholas & Metaxas, Theodore, 2012. "War for Profit: Macroculture, Corsairs and partnership companies," MPRA Paper 40926, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:40926
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    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/40996/2/MPRA_paper_40996.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Arthur, W Brian, 1989. "Competing Technologies, Increasing Returns, and Lock-In by Historical Events," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 99(394), pages 116-131, March.
    2. George A. Akerlof, 2009. "How Human Psychology Drives the Economy and Why It Matters," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1175-1175.
    3. David, Paul A, 1985. "Clio and the Economics of QWERTY," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(2), pages 332-337, May.
    4. Nicholas Kyriazis & Theodore Metaxas, 2011. "Path dependence, change and the emergence of the first joint-stock companies," Business History, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 53(3), pages 363-374.
    5. George Halkos & Nickolas Kyriazis, 2005. "A Naval Revolution and Institutional Change: The Case of the United Provinces," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 19(1), pages 41-68, January.
    6. de Vries,Jan & van der Woude,Ad, 1997. "The First Modern Economy," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521570619, April.
    7. de Vries,Jan & van der Woude,Ad, 1997. "The First Modern Economy," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521578257, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Path dependence and change; institutions; partnership companies; corsairs; 16th-17th century England and United Provinces (Dutch Republic);

    JEL classification:

    • N23 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations
    • N43 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism

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