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Elementary Forms of Economic Organization

This paper presents a model where societies whose population expands, experience advances in specialization at the cost of diluted monitoring, which limits enforcement and hinders trade possibilities. Cash and private circulating instruments can replace monitoring. Advances in specialization may make it feasible to replace agriculture with manufacturing. The model generates three stable regimes with di¤erent combinations of productive systems and trade arrangements. In small societies, agriculture is accompanied by mutual sharing arrangements of the gift exchange type; in medium sized societies, agriculture is accompanied by monetary trade; in large societies, manufacturing is accompanied by circulating private banknotes issued by specialized agents acting as intermediaries.

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Paper provided by Tor Vergata University, CEIS in its series CEIS Research Paper with number 288.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: 01 Oct 2013
Date of revision: 01 Oct 2013
Handle: RePEc:rtv:ceisrp:288
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