Archive for December, 2006

Top Posts of 2006

| Peter Klein |

As 2006 draws to a close we reflect on our most popular posts of the year. (Actually, we’ve only been in operation since April, so these are our most popular posts of all time, but you get the idea.) Here’s the list, followed by some commentary:

1. Is Math More Precise Than Words?
2. Intellectual Property: The New Backlash
3. Dilemmas of Formal Economic Theory
4. We Need Some Economics of Pomo
5. The New Bashing of Economics: The Case of Management Theory
6. Has Corporate Corruption Increased?
7. HRM in Heaven and Hell
8. Yale’s New MBA Curriculum: “Perspectives,” Not Functions
9. Malthus and the “Dismal Science”
10. Formal Economic Theory: Beautiful but Useless?
11. Why Do Sociologists Lean Left — Really Left?
12. The SWOT Model May Be Wrong
13. Multi-Culturality and Economic Organization
14. What Do We Really Know About Organizations?
15. Academic Insults: CCSM Edition
16. A Nobel for Entrepreneurship?
17. Price as a Signal of Quality
18. Economics: Puzzles or Problems?
19. Another Irritating Practice 
20. Market-Based Management

Now, we’re talking small numbers here — the Drudge Report we ain’t — so the ranking is highly sensitive to random events, like an incoming link from Marginal Revolution. Nonetheless, some clear patterns emerge. (more…)

31 December 2006 at 10:07 am Leave a comment

We Happy Danes

| Nicolai Foss |

As indicated by the World Map of Happiness Denmark is #1 in the World in terms of happiness — and appears to have held that position for about three decades. Here is a great tongue-in-cheek paper that explains this fact in terms of such factors as hair color and prowess in sport. The paper concludes:

Our analysis points to two explanatory factors. The Danish football triumph of 1992 has had a lasting impact. This victory arguably provided the biggest boost to the Danish psyche since the protracted history of Danish setbacks began with defeat in England in 1066, followed by the loss of Sweden, Norway, Northern Germany, the Danish West Indies, and Iceland. The satisfaction of the Danes, however, began well before 1992, albeit at a more moderate level. The key factor that explains this and that differentiates Danes from Swedes and Finns seems to be that Danes have consistently low (and indubitably realistic) expectations for the year to come. Year after year they are pleasantly surprised to find that not everything is getting more rotten in the state of Denmark.

31 December 2006 at 8:09 am 2 comments

We Luddites

| Nicolai Foss |

In permanent shock since he learned that I own but never use a cellular phone (a middle-management tool if there ever was one!), my co-blogger often argues that I am a Luddite, and claims that this, rather than my significantly higher teaching and administration load, accounts for my relatively low blogging frequency (guess who is also maintaining the more technical aspects of O&M?). I plead partly guilty to the charge, but wish to point out that there are much great sinners than me. Enter NYU Professor and prominent Austrian Mario Rizzo.  (more…)

31 December 2006 at 8:02 am 2 comments

Underappreciated, But Proud

| Peter Klein |

Thanks to The Bayesian Heresy for including us among “Favorite Economics Blogs of Year 2006.” We’re make the “Underappreciated” category (other categories include “Heavy Weights,” “New Comers,” and “Used to be Very Good”). Many fine blogs on the list, and we’re proud to travel in such good company (Bayesian Heresy included).

30 December 2006 at 11:16 am Leave a comment

Weirdest Abstract I Read Today

| Peter Klein |

From the April/June 2006 issue of Food and Foodways:

Towards Queering Food Studies: Foodways, Heteronormativity, and Hungry Women in Chicana Lesbian Writing

Julia C. Ehrhardt
University of Oklahoma Honors College, Norman, Oklahoma, USA

As the nascent field of food studies takes shape, insights from queer studies have the potential to enrich our understandings of the interrelationships among food, gender, and sexuality. The project of queering food studies invites us to consider how food practices and beliefs reinforce and resist heterosexual gender ideologies. In this article, I analyze foodways in recent Chicana lesbian literature, examining writings that illustrate the cultural endurance of heteronormative constructions of gender even as they demonstrate how these beliefs are disrupted, destabilized, and transformed in queer literary kitchens. Poetry and essays by Chicana lesbians challenge dominant models of Chicana culinary roles by emphasizing women’s efforts to satisfy their physical and sexual appetites.In particular, Carla Trujillo’s 2003 novel, What Night Brings, highlights the figure of the hungry lesbian as a provocative counterpoint to the literary image of the Chicana as cook. Literature by Chicana lesbians not only invites scholars to question heteronormative assumptions about food, gender, and identity, but also demonstrates the potential of queer studies to enrich a variety of topics in food scholarship.

Food and Foodways 14, no. 2 (April-June 2006): 91-109.

(Thanks to Pierre Desrochers for the pointer.)

30 December 2006 at 12:32 am 2 comments

96K on the 96th: Happy Birthday, Ronald Coase

| Peter Klein |

Ronald Coase turns 96 today. In honor of his birthday, the Contracting and Organizations Research Institute (CORI), whose mission and programs grow out of Coase’s work, announces the addition of the 96,000th contract to its online, full-text searchable database of contracts. Writes Director Michael Sykuta:

December 29, 2006, marks the 96th birthday of Professor Ronald Coase, the Nobel Prize winning economist whose pathbreaking work on transaction costs and property rights continues to inspire CORI’s vision and programs. Professor Coase has been more than just a intellectual inspiration for CORI, having supported CORI’s early development with contributions of his time and resources and having served on the Academic Advisory Board.

December 29, 2006, also marks the day the CORI K-Base reached 96,000 contracts, an appropriate milestone on this important day in the history of economic thought and the history of CORI. And we’re not finished growing! In fact, we’re just getting started on a new phase of expansion to make the CORI K-Base an even more valuable resource to reduce the transaction costs of doing research on the economic system and of doing the business of contracting.

29 December 2006 at 10:37 am Leave a comment

Institutions and Avner Greif

| Peter Klein |

Avner Greif is one of the leading contributors to the “institutional environment” branch of the New Institutional Economics. His work on the emergence of long-distance trade in the medieval Mediterranean world changed the way many social scientists think about reputation, trust, and the role of decentralized, non-state institutions in supporting commercial activity.

The January 2007 issue of Reason features a review essay of Greif’s recent book, Institutions and the Path to the Modern Economy (Cambridge, 2006). The review provides a solid, non-technical overview of Greif’s work. (more…)

29 December 2006 at 12:45 am Leave a comment

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Our Recent Books

Nicolai J. Foss and Peter G. Klein, Organizing Entrepreneurial Judgment: A New Approach to the Firm (Cambridge University Press, 2012).
Peter G. Klein and Micheal E. Sykuta, eds., The Elgar Companion to Transaction Cost Economics (Edward Elgar, 2010).
Peter G. Klein, The Capitalist and the Entrepreneur: Essays on Organizations and Markets (Mises Institute, 2010).
Richard N. Langlois, The Dynamics of Industrial Capitalism: Schumpeter, Chandler, and the New Economy (Routledge, 2007).
Nicolai J. Foss, Strategy, Economic Organization, and the Knowledge Economy: The Coordination of Firms and Resources (Oxford University Press, 2005).
Raghu Garud, Arun Kumaraswamy, and Richard N. Langlois, eds., Managing in the Modular Age: Architectures, Networks and Organizations (Blackwell, 2003).
Nicolai J. Foss and Peter G. Klein, eds., Entrepreneurship and the Firm: Austrian Perspectives on Economic Organization (Elgar, 2002).
Nicolai J. Foss and Volker Mahnke, eds., Competence, Governance, and Entrepreneurship: Advances in Economic Strategy Research (Oxford, 2000).
Nicolai J. Foss and Paul L. Robertson, eds., Resources, Technology, and Strategy: Explorations in the Resource-based Perspective (Routledge, 2000).