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Public Choice and the Economic Analysis of Anarchy: A Survey

Benjamin Powell

Texas Tech University - Free Market Institute; Texas Tech University - Rawls College of Business

Edward Peter Stringham

Trinity College

January 7, 2009

Public choice economists began studying the economics of anarchy in the 1970s. Since then, the amount of research on anarchy has burgeoned. This article surveys the important public choice contributions to the economics of anarchy. Following the lead of the early public choice economists, many current economists are researching and analyzing how individuals interact without government. From their non-public-interested explanations of the creation of government law enforcement to their historical studies of attempts to internalize externalities under anarchy, public choice scholars are arriving at a more realistic perspective on government and how people interact when government law enforcement is lacking. Although the economics of politics often receives more attention, the economics of anarchy is an important area of research in public choice.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 72

Keywords: anarchism, lawlessness, order, internalization of externalities, self-governance

JEL Classification: D74, H11, K42

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Date posted: January 8, 2009 ; Last revised: January 24, 2009

Suggested Citation

Powell, Benjamin and Stringham, Edward Peter, Public Choice and the Economic Analysis of Anarchy: A Survey (January 7, 2009). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1324407 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1324407

Contact Information

Benjamin Powell
Texas Tech University - Free Market Institute ( email )
Box 45059
Lubbock, TX 79409-5059
United States
806.742.7138 (Phone)
806.742.1854 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://www.fmi.ttu.edu
Texas Tech University - Rawls College of Business ( email )
Lubbock, TX 79409
United States
806.834.3097 (Phone)
806.742.1854 (Fax)
Edward Peter Stringham (Contact Author)
Trinity College ( email )
United States
Feedback to SSRN

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