IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

The Institutional Foundations of Public Policy: A Transactions Approach with Application to Argentina

  • Mariano Tommasi


    (Department of Economics, Universidad de San Andres & Center of Studies for Institutional Development)

  • Pablo T. Spiller

    (University of California at Berkeley & Center of Studies for Institutional Development)

Public policies are the outcomes of complex intertemporal exchanges among politicians. The basic institutional characteristics of a country constitute the framework within which those transactions are accomplished. We develop a transactions theory to understand the ways in which political institutions affect the transactions that political actors are able to undertake, and hence the policies that emerge. We argue that Argentina is a case in which the functioning of political institutions has been such that it prevented the capacity to undertake efficient intertemporal political exchanges. We use positive political theory and transaction cost economics to explain the workings of Argentine political institutions, and to show how that maps into low-quality policies.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
File Function: First version, 2000
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Universidad de San Andres, Departamento de Economia in its series Working Papers with number 29.

in new window

Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: May 2000
Date of revision: May 2000
Handle: RePEc:sad:wpaper:29
Contact details of provider: Postal: Vito Dumas 284, Victoria, Buenos Aires, B1644BID
Phone: +5411-4725-7000
Fax: +5411-4725-7010
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. North, D.C., 1990. "A Transaction Cost Theory of Politics," Papers 144, Washington St. Louis - School of Business and Political Economy.
  2. Palmer, Matthew S R, 1995. "Toward an Economics of Comparative Political Organization: Examining Ministerial Responsibility," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(1), pages 164-88, April.
  3. Juan Pablo Nicolini & Josefina Posadas & Juan Sanguinetti & Pablo Sanguinetti & Mariano Tommasi, 2002. "Decentralization, Fiscal Discipline in Sub-National Governments and the Bailout Problem: The Case of Argentina," Research Department Publications 3160, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  4. Jones, Mark P. & Sanguinetti, Pablo & Tommasi, Mariano, 2000. "Politics, institutions, and fiscal performance in a federal system: an analysis of the Argentine provinces," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 305-333, April.
  5. Moe, Terry M, 1990. "Political Institutions: The Neglected Side of the Story," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(0), pages 213-53.
  6. Williamson, Oliver E, 1979. "Transaction-Cost Economics: The Governance of Contractural Relations," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(2), pages 233-61, October.
  7. Mariano Tommasi & Matias Iaryczower & Pablo T. Spiller, 2002. "Judicial Decision Making in Unstable Environments, Argentina 1935-1998," Working Papers 30, Universidad de San Andres, Departamento de Economia, revised Oct 2002.
  8. McCubbins, Mathew D & Noll, Roger G & Weingast, Barry R, 1987. "Administrative Procedures as Instruments of Political Control," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(2), pages 243-77, Fall.
  9. Alesina, Alberto, 1988. "Credibility and Policy Convergence in a Two-Party System with Rational Voters," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(4), pages 796-805, September.
  10. Ramseyer, J Mark & Rasmusen, Eric B, 1997. "Judicial Independence in a Civil Law Regime: The Evidence from Japan," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 13(2), pages 259-86, October.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sad:wpaper:29. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Tamara Sulaque)

The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Tamara Sulaque to update the entry or send us the correct address

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.