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Institutional Design and Ideas-Driven Social Change: Notes from an Ostromian Perspective

The Good Society, 2011, vol. 20, no. 1, pp. 50-66

18 Pages Posted: 7 Dec 2015  

Paul Dragos Aligica

George Mason University - Mercatus Center

Peter J. Boettke

George Mason University - Department of Economics

Date Written: 2011

Abstract

The article takes as a starting point the notion that there are two ways of approaching the issue of ideas and institutional design from an Ostromian perspective. The first is straightforward: simply follow the explicit arguments developed by them and synthesize the main points made over time around concepts such as epistemic choice, institutional levels, and ideas-informed social experiments. We call this the “Level 1” perspective. The “Level 2” perspective is different and, in a sense, indirect: move beyond a mere expository approach and to elaborate several implications and assumptions inherent in the Bloomington scholars’ arguments, but which were not always made fully explicit by them. Once that is done, this perspective links them to some of the explicitly articulated and better recognized points defining their approach. In doing that, the very problem of the relationship between institutional design and social engineering comes to be addressed in a straightforward and edifying way.

Keywords: Ostrom, Institutional Design, Social Change

JEL Classification: P14; P16

Suggested Citation

Aligica, Paul Dragos and Boettke, Peter J., Institutional Design and Ideas-Driven Social Change: Notes from an Ostromian Perspective (2011). The Good Society, 2011, vol. 20, no. 1, pp. 50-66. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2699906

Paul Dragos Aligica

George Mason University - Mercatus Center ( email )

3434 Washington Blvd., 4th Floor
Arlington, VA 22201
United States

Peter J. Boettke (Contact Author)

George Mason University - Department of Economics ( email )

4400 University Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030
United States
703-993-1149 (Phone)
703-993-1133 (Fax)

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