22 Pages Posted: 19 Sep 2019 Last revised: 26 Dec 2019
Date Written: September 11, 2019
Orthodox economics models defense as a public good provided by a central nation state. This approach abstracts away from the diverse institutions and processes individuals use to provide defense in the actual world. This paper frames defense as a polycentric system whereby dispersed groups of people find context-specific solutions to collective action problems. We explore what polycentric defense looks like, both theoretically and through historical illustrations.
Keywords: national security, national defense, polycentricity, collective action problems, selective incentives, public goods
JEL Classification: D02, F52, H41, H56
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation