New institutional economics explains capitalist institutions by means of neoclassical tools. This method consists of introducing non-market institutions as solutions to market failures. The explicit or implicit assumption is that “in the beginning there were markets”. In this paper, we criticize this conception inherited from neoclassical economics by focusing on Williamson’s theory. First, we discuss Williamson’s speculative method, which idealizes the market and presents it as natural and universal. We then suggest that Williamson’s categories, his method and conception are themselves products of bourgeois ideology. In this sense, we conclude, Williamson himself is ultimately an “institution of capitalism”.

Anti-Williamson: a Marxian critique of new institutional economics

PALERMO, Giulio;
2004

Abstract

New institutional economics explains capitalist institutions by means of neoclassical tools. This method consists of introducing non-market institutions as solutions to market failures. The explicit or implicit assumption is that “in the beginning there were markets”. In this paper, we criticize this conception inherited from neoclassical economics by focusing on Williamson’s theory. First, we discuss Williamson’s speculative method, which idealizes the market and presents it as natural and universal. We then suggest that Williamson’s categories, his method and conception are themselves products of bourgeois ideology. In this sense, we conclude, Williamson himself is ultimately an “institution of capitalism”.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11379/35554
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