Learning, Institutions, and Economic Performance

21 Pages Posted: 4 Aug 2004

See all articles by C. Mantzavinos

C. Mantzavinos

University of Athens

Douglass C. North

Washington University in St. Louis - Department of Economics

Syed Shariq

Stanford University - Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies

Abstract

In this article, we provide a broad overview of the interplay among cognition, belief systems, and institutions, and how they affect economic performance. We argue that a deeper understanding of institutions' emergence, their working properties, and their effect on economic and political outcomes should begin from an analysis of cognitive processes. We explore the nature of individual and collective learning, stressing that the issue is not whether agents are perfectly or boundedly rational, but rather how human beings actually reason and choose, individually and in collective settings. We then tie the processes of learning to institutional analysis, providing arguments in favor of what can be characterized as "cognitive institutionalism." Besides, we show that a full treatment of the phenomenon of path dependence should start at the cognitive level, proceed at the institutional level, and culminate at the economic level.

Suggested Citation

Mantzavinos, C. and North, Douglass C. and Shariq, Syed, Learning, Institutions, and Economic Performance. Perspectives on Politics, Vol. 2, No. 1, 2004. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=510902

C. Mantzavinos (Contact Author)

University of Athens ( email )

5 Stadiou Strt
Athens, 12131
Greece

HOME PAGE: http://www.mantzavinos.org

Douglass C. North

Washington University in St. Louis - Department of Economics ( email )

One Brookings Drive
St. Louis, MO 63130
United States
314-935-5809 (Phone)
Not Available (Fax)

Syed Shariq

Stanford University - Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
1,390
Abstract Views
6,670
rank
13,001
PlumX Metrics