Governing Markets as Knowledge Commons: Introduction
24 Pages Posted: 26 Mar 2018 Last revised: 13 May 2018
Date Written: March 22, 2018
We lay down a theoretical framework for the analysis of the production, reproduction, and transformation of intellectual and legal infrastructures that enable market interactions using the Governing Knowledge Commons research program. A distinctive contribution of this volume is conceptualizing these knowledge structures as shared goods. There are four building blocks around which the edited volume revolves: First, markets are cultural, they depend on various kinds of knowledge some of which are governed as common pool resources; markets coincide with a form of culture that we call civilization. Secondly, civilization (understood as a set of impersonal rules) is a shared good which is – unlike physical commons – produced and reproduced by contributions and sharing. The more one uses a shared good, the more there is of it. Thirdly, the knowledge that constitutes our civilization includes various kinds of intellectual and legal infrastructures. These infrastructures are a part of a shared capital structure: they are economic inputs. Finally, entrepreneurs sustain and marginally change the shared intellectual and legal infrastructures through breaking rules, slight evasions, and justifications.
Keywords: Shared goods, institutions, conventions, knowledge commons, markets, entrepreneurship, intellectual infrastructures
JEL Classification: D02, O43, K1, L2, N80
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