How to Research Complex Systems: A Methodologial Comparison of 'Ordo-Liberalism' and 'Regulation Theory'
INSTITUTIONAL ECONOMICS IN FRANCE AND GERMANY, REIHE ECONOMICS AND PHILOSOPHY, A. Labrousse, J. D. Weisz, pp. 272-301, Springer, 2000
28 Pages Posted: 11 Dec 2006
French regulation theory and German theory of order are nationally specific forms of institutional economics with independent research traditions and partly a particular conceptual framework. However, because of the different roots, especially with relation to Marxism, these theories coexist without any communication among each other. The paper draws an explicit comparison between both theories, which both seem to meet the special challenges of analyzing complex economic systems in a way that is methodologically more appropriate than the deductive-nomological approach by mainstream economics. I analyze the relation between descriptive and normative statements in the two approaches, and I pay particular attention to their conceptual approach towards the singularity of institutional change, i.e. the issue of the taxonomy of economic systems. Both theories propose certain laws of transition in institutional change and elaborate on an implicit idea of adaptive efficiency. However, the French school is much farther away from neoclassical economics, especially in the theory of labour markets, and it highlight the role of crises in institutional change.
Keywords: regulation theory, theory of order, complex systems, adaptive efficiency, institutional change, taxonomy of economic systems
JEL Classification: B25, B41, P00, P50
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