Archive for June, 2007

Spousal Combinations

| Peter Klein |

This post got me thinking: who are the top husband-and-wife teams (not named Foss or Klein) in economics, management, finance, and related fields? Some candidates:

  • George Akerlof and Janet Yellen
  • Birger Wernerfelt and Cynthia Montgomery
  • David and Christina Romer
  • Guido Imbens and Susan Athey
  • Scott Schaefer and Rachel Hayes

There must be many more. Suggestions? More importantly, is there a good explanation — perhaps from team theory — for greater (or lower) productivity in spousal teams, compared to other types of collaborative units? (Serious answers only, please!)

30 June 2007 at 9:37 am 16 comments

What Job Instability?

| Peter Klein |

A truism among management scholars is that jobs, in the new, knowledge-based, hypercompetitive, deregulated, entrepreneurial, dog-eat-dog, Schumpeterian, long-tail economy, have become less secure. Perhaps my father or grandfather spent his career with a single firm and got a gold watch upon retirement but I constantly switch jobs, by choice or necessity, resulting in a loss of firm-specific or job-specific human capital, increased employee anxiety, and a deterioration of social bonds.

The data, however, suggest otherwise. In “The More Things Change, The More They Stay the Same: Trends in Long-Term Employment in the United States, 1969-2002,” Ann Huff Stevens finds in 1969, the average tenure for US men in their longest job was 21.9 years. In 2002, the figure is 21.4 years. The percentage of male workers working for a single employer for 20 years or more is the same was the same in 2002 as it 1969. By this measure, at least, jobs are as “stable” today as they were in the Good Old Days.

29 June 2007 at 10:57 am 7 comments

Thanks to Chihmao

| Peter Klein |

Thanks to Chihmao Hsieh for guest blogging over the last several weeks. We’ve greatly enjoyed his contributions and look forward to his continued participation in the comment threads and his insights on entrepreneurship, innovation, organization, and strategy. Thanks, Chihmao!

29 June 2007 at 10:43 am 1 comment

Estimating the Value of Creative Invention

| Chihmao Hsieh |

One final bit of shameless self-promotion, as I soon head off into the figurative sunset from all this blogging: an empirically-oriented working paper of mine entitled “The Identification of Opportunities and the Value of Invention” can now be found here at SSRN. Any comments or suggestions are absolutely welcomed! Description of the research lies below. (more…)

29 June 2007 at 3:43 am Leave a comment

“Made in China”: The Name of a Creative Firm

| Chihmao Hsieh |

Today I received in the mail a sample issue of Fast Company. The cover story — full-text version found here — describes a China that is dramatically shifting from a country of copycat and imitation to a country of creativity and inventiveness. While its education system “does little to inspire,” and both government censorship and a very weak IPR policy do little to help support creativity, China’s younger citizens (e.g., aged 15-35) are finding and institutionalizing platforms to make themselves heard. And yes, the article mentions a London-based creative agency named “Made In China.”

29 June 2007 at 2:31 am Leave a comment

Best Sentence I Read Today

| Peter Klein |

From Fabio at

No one has forbidden the marriage of two economists, even though the thought churns my stomach.

What will he do if he runs into these people?

28 June 2007 at 10:49 am 1 comment

Signal Extraction Problems: Recommendation Letters

| Nicolai Foss |

Some kinds of recommendation letters need careful interpretation. A letter written for a student to help him or her study abroad usually doesn’t need much interpretation. But a letter written by a colleague for a colleague to a colleague is a different matter. One reason is that writers of recommendation letters differ. Some express themselves very directly, others more indirectly. The same words mean different things to different people. “Solid research” may mean “boring and unimaginative” to one person, but may mean, well, “solid” to another person.   (more…)

28 June 2007 at 6:29 am 4 comments

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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).