The Law and Economics Approach to Property
Daniel H. Cole
Indiana University Maurer School of Law; Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs; Indiana University Bloomington - Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis
February 4, 2014
Indiana Legal Studies Research Paper No. 277
This short paper written for a symposium issue of the Property Law Review on "Research Methods in Property Law," provides a concise introduction to the ways in which property rights (and duties) structure economic relations and, in turn, are influenced by economic considerations. Among the topics covered are: (a) property as a functional "institution" that not only facilitates exchange but also supports resource conservation (via the right to exclude); (b) Coasian comparative institutional analysis as a research method based on transaction costs; (c) property conflicts as joint- or social-cost problems; (d) the law and economics of property remedies; and (e) the under-explored variety and complexity of property regimes. The paper concludes with the obvious point (but one often ignored by legal scholars) that a thorough understanding of property law (including public and common property, as well as private property) requires attention to the vital economic functions it serves in virtually all societies.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 11
Keywords: property, Coase, law and economics, natural resources, Ostrom
JEL Classification: D62, K11, K13, K32, L23, P16, Q15, Q2, R14
Date posted: January 8, 2014 ; Last revised: February 5, 2014
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