The Functionalism of Legal Origins

DOES LAW MATTER? ON LAW AND ECONOMIC GROWTH, 21-39 (100 Ius Commune Europaeum, Michael Faure & Jan Smits eds., 2011)

19 Pages Posted: 29 Mar 2013

See all articles by Ralf Michaels

Ralf Michaels

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law

Date Written: October 1, 2011

Abstract

This article, written on request for the centennial issue of Ius Commune Europaeum, connects the economic literature on legal origins (La Porta et al) and the World Bank's Doing Business reports with discussions in comparative law about the functional method. It finds that a number of parallels and similarities exist, and that much of the criticism that has been voiced against functionalism should apply, mutates mutants, also to these more recent projects. The attraction that these projects have derive not, it is argued, from their methodological sophistication, but instead from "the strange lure of economics" and from the ostentatious objectivity of numbers and statistics.

Suggested Citation

Michaels, Ralf, The Functionalism of Legal Origins (October 1, 2011). DOES LAW MATTER? ON LAW AND ECONOMIC GROWTH, 21-39 (100 Ius Commune Europaeum, Michael Faure & Jan Smits eds., 2011). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2240928

Ralf Michaels (Contact Author)

Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law ( email )

Mittelweg 187
Hamburg, D-20148
Germany

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