1996The Evolution of Institutions and Technology
Provisional Schedule of Lectures and Seminars
Geoff Hodgson Judge Institute for Management Studies University of Cambridge Wed 24 January 2.00pm: `Institutions, technology, knowledge, learning and evolution: An overview' Wed 31 January 2.00pm: `The necessity of habits, rules and institutions' Wed 7 February 2.00pm: `The evolutionary metaphor: Ontogenetic and phylogenetic evolution. Levels and units of analysis: Optimisation and evolution' Wed 14 February 2.00pm: Seminar on Murphy (1994). Wed 21 February2.00pm: `Path-dependency: Technological chreods and institutional lock-in' Wed 28 February 2.00pm. `Evolutionary and competence-based theories of the firm' MPhil in Management Studies Lent Term 1996 The Evolution of Institutions and Technology Topics for Student Essays and Presentations Possible topics for a 20-minute presentation:
1. What are institutions?
2. Can game theory contribute to our understanding of the origin, nature, and functions of institutions?
3. In what ways may institutions affect our decisions and
actions? Are institutions merely constraints on decision-making, or something more?
4. Contrast the approaches to analysis based on the concepts of
(a) equilibrium and (b) cumulative causation.
5. What is `lock-in'? Give institutional and technological
6. Distinguish between different types of institutional and
7. Does competitive evolution favour the most efficient
technologies and institutions?
8. Consider the concepts of `novelty' and `innovation'. How do
they relate to an evolutionary perspective?
9 ANOTHER TOPIC BY ARRANGEMENT.
Possible topics for a 4000-word assessment:
1. What are the main distinguishing features of the `old' and the
`new' institutional economics, and what are the limitations
and value of each?
2. In what ways can institutional and evolutionary economics
challenge models of organisational or economic phenomena based
on the assumption of rational, optimising behaviour?
3. In what way can evolutionary thinking contribute to our
understanding of institutional and technological change?
4. Critically examine the proposition that national economic
growth performances are partially explicable in terms of
institutional rigidities, sclerosis, or disruption.
5. Outline the `evolutionary' or `competence-based' theory of the
firm and contrast it with the contractarian perspective.
6. What is the evidence for long waves in technological and
7. Outline and critically examine the concept of `national
systems of innovation'.
8. ANOTHER TOPIC BY ARRANGEMENT.
Basalla, G. (1989) The Evolution of Technology (Cambridge
Choi, Y. B. (1994) Paradigms and Conventions: Uncertainty,
Decision Making, and Entrepreneurship (Ann Arbor: University
of Michigan Press).
Clark, N. G. and Juma, C. (1987) Long-Run Economics: An
Evolutionary Approach to Economic Growth (London: Pinter).
Coombs, R. Saviotti, P. and Walsh, V. (1987) Economics and
Technological Change (Basingstoke: Macmillan).
Dosi, G. (1988) `The Sources, Procedures, and Microeconomic
Effects of Innovation', Journal of Economic Literature, 26(3),
September, pp. 1120-71. Reprinted in Freeman (1990).
Dosi, Giovanni (1995) `Hierarchies, Markets and Power: Some
Foundational Issues on the Nature of Contemporary Economic
Organizations', Industrial and Corporate Change, 4(1), pp. 1-19.
Dosi, G., Freeman, C., Nelson, R., Silverberg, G. and Soete, L.
L. G. (eds.) (1988) Technical Change and Economic Theory
Dosi, G., Freeman, C., Fabiani, S. (1994) `The Process of
Economic Development: Introducing Some Stylized Facts and
Theories on Technologies, Firms and Institutions', Industrial
and Corporate Change, 3(1), pp. 1-45.
Elster, J. (1983) Explaining Technical Change (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press).
England, R. W. (ed.) (1994) Evolutionary Concepts in Contemporary
Economics (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press).
Field, A. J. (1979) `On the Explanation of Rules Using Rational
Choice Models', Journal of Economic Issues, 13(1), March, pp.
49-72. Reprinted in Hodgson (1994).
Field, A. J. (1984) `Microeconomics, Norms and Rationality',
Economic Development and Cultural Change, 32(4), July, pp.
683-711. Reprinted in Hodgson (1994).
Fransman, M. (1994) `Information, Knowledge, Vision and Theories
of the Firm', Industrial and Corporate Change, 3(3), pp. 713-57.
Freeman, C. (ed.) (1983) Long Waves in the World Economy (London:
Freeman, C. (ed.) (1990) The Economics of Innovation (Aldershot:
Freeman, C. (1995) `The "National System of Innovation" in
Historical Perspective', Cambridge Journal of Economics,
19(1), February, pp. 5-24.
Freeman, C., Clark, J. and Soete, L. L. G. (1982) Unemployment
and Technical Innovation: A Study of Long Waves in Economic
Development (London: Pinter).
Foss, Nicolai Juul (1993) `Theories of the Firm: Contractual and
Competence Perspectives', Journal of Evolutionary Economics,
3(2), May, pp. 127-44.
Grabher, G. (ed.) (1993) The Embedded Firm: On the Socioeconomics
of Industrial Networks (London: Routledge).
Hall, P. (1994) Innovation, Economics and Evolution (Hemel
Hempstead: Harvester Wheatsheaf).
Hamilton, Gary G. and Feenstra, Robert C. (1995) `Varieties of
Hierarchies and Markets: An Introduction', Industrial and
Corporate Change, 4(1), pp. 51-87.
Hodgson, G. M. (1988) Economics and Institutions: A Manifesto for
a Modern Institutional Economics (Cambridge: Polity Press).
Hodgson, G. M. (1989) `Institutional Rigidities and Economic
Growth', Cambridge Journal of Economics, 13(1), March, pp. 79-101.
Hodgson, G. M. (1991) `Economic Evolution: Intervention Contra
Pangloss', Journal of Economic Issues, 25(2), June, pp. 519-33.
Hodgson, G. M. (1993) Economics and Evolution: Bringing Life Back
into Economics (Cambridge: Polity Press).
Hodgson, G. M. (ed.) (1994) The Economics of Institutions
(Aldershot: Edward Elgar).
Hodgson, G. M. (1994) `Optimisation and Evolution: Winter's
Critique of Friedman Revisited', Cambridge Journal of
Economics, 18(4), August, pp. 413-30.
Hodgson, G. M. (ed.) (1995) Economics and Biology (Aldershot:
Hodgson, G. M., Samuels, W. J. and Tool, M. R. (eds) (1994) The
Elgar Companion to Institutional and Evolutionary Economics
(Aldershot: Edward Elgar).
Hodgson, G. M. and Screpanti, E. (eds) (1991) Rethinking
Economics: Markets, Technology and Economic Evolution
(Aldershot: Edward Elgar).
Katz, M. L. and Shapiro, C. (1994) `Systems Competition and
Network Effects', Journal of Economic Perspectives, 8(2),
Spring, pp. 93-115.
Langlois, R. N. and Robertson, P. L. (1995) Firms, Markets and
Economic Change: A Dynamic Theory of Business Institutions
(London and New York: Routledge).
Liebowitz, S. J. and Margolis, Stephen E. (1994) `Network
Externality: An Uncommon Tragedy', Journal of Economic
Perspectives, 8(2), Spring, pp. 133-50.
Loasby, B. J. (1991) Equilibrium and Evolution: An Exploration of
Connecting Principles in Economics (Manchester: Manchester
Lundvall, B.-Å. (ed.) (1992) National Systems of Innovation:
Towards a Theory of Innovation and Interactive Learning
Mansfield, E. and Mansfield, E. (eds) (1993) The Economics of
Technical Change (Aldershot: Edward Elgar).
Mirowski, P. (1986) `Institutions as a Solution Concept in a Game
Theory Context', in Mirowski, Philip (ed.) (1986) The
Reconstruction of Economic Theory (Boston: Kluwer-Nijhoff),
pp. 241-63. Reprinted in Hodgson (1994).
Mirowski, P. (1986b) `Mathematical Formalism and Economic
Explanation', in Mirowski (1986a, pp. 179-240).
Mokyr, J. (1990) The Lever of Riches: Technological Creativity
and Economic Progress (Oxford: Oxford University Press).
Mowery, D. C. and Oxley, J. E. (1995) `Inward Technology Transfer
and Competitiveness: The Role of National Innovation Systems',
Cambridge Journal of Economics, 19(1), February, pp. 67-93.
Mueller, D. C. (ed.) (1983) The Political Economy of Growth (New
Haven: Yale University Press).
Murphy, J. B. (1994) `The Kinds of Order in Society', in
Mirowski, Philip (ed.) (1994) Natural Images in Economic
Thought: Markets Read in Tooth and Claw (Cambridge and New
York: Cambridge University Press), pp. 536-82.
Nelson, R. R. (1981) `Research on Productivity Growth and
Productivity Differences: Dead Ends and New Departures',
Journal of Economic Literature, 29, September, pp. 1029-64.
Nelson, R. R. (1987) Understanding Technical Change as an
Evolutionary Process (Amsterdam: North-Holland).
Nelson, R. R. (1991) `Why Do Firms Differ, and How Does it
Matter?', Strategic Management Journal, 12, Special Issue,
Winter, pp. 61-74.
Nelson, R. R. (ed.) (1993) National Innovation Systems: A
Comparative Analysis (Oxford: Oxford University Press).
Nelson, R. R. (1994) `The Co-evolution of Technology, Industrial
Structure, and Supporting Institutions', Industrial and
Corporate Change, 3(1), pp. 47-63.
Nelson, R. R. and Winter, S. G. (1982) An Evolutionary Theory of
Economic Change (Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press).
Nooteboom, B. (1992) `Towards a Dynamic Theory of Transactions',
Journal of Evolutionary Economics, 2(4), December, pp. 281-99.
North, D. C. (1990) Institutions, Institutional Change and
Economic Performance (Cambridge: Cambridge University
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Yale University Press).
Penrose, E. T. (1959) The Theory of the Growth of the Firm
(Oxford: Basil Blackwell).
Plotkin, H. (1994) Darwin Machines and the Nature of Knowledge:
Concerning Adaptations, Instinct and the Evolution of
Intelligence (Harmondsworth: Penguin).
Rutherford, Malcolm C. (1994) Institutions in Economics: The Old
and the New Institutionalism (Cambridge: Cambridge University
Samuels, W. J. (ed.) (1988) Institutional Economics, 3 vols
(Aldershot: Edward Elgar).
Schotter, A. (1981) The Economic Theory of Social Institutions
(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press).
Tylecote, A. (1992) Long Waves in the World Economy: The Present
Crisis in Historical Perspective (London: Routledge).
Williamson, O. E. and Winter, S. G. (eds) (1991) The Nature of
the Firm: Origins, Evolution, and Development (Oxford and New
York: Oxford University Press).
Witt, U. (ed.) Evolutionary Economics (Aldershot: Edward Elgar).
Veblen, T. B. (1919) The Place of Science in Modern Civilisation
and Other Essays (New York: Huebsch). Reprinted 1990 with a
new introduction by W. J. Samuels (New Brunswick:
Zysman, John (1994) `How Institutions Create Historically Rooted
Trajectories of Growth', Industrial and Corporate Change,
3(1), pp. 243-83.
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