This is an extract of our Evolution Of Property Rights document, which we sell as part of our Property (Duke Wiener) Outlines collection written by the top tier of Duke University School Of Law students.
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Evolution of property rights I.
Utilitarian theory of Evolution of Property Rights a. How does property arise from non-property? Non-property = tragedy of open access in which: i. Overuse = benefit to self, harm to others (externality) ii. Conservation = cost to self, benefit to others iii. Incentive to "free ride" on others' conservation iv. Inadequate "collective action" to conserve the resource b. Question - How do we solve this Tragedy? What form of property should the solution take? Each provides different incentives & costs...
c. Blackstone's Account of Evolution of Property Rights i. Very similar to utilitarian point of view ii. Contrasts idea of absolute dominion with the gradual creation of property rights with social change iii. Originally ? all was commons (from the Creator), all we had was temporary use rights at first iv. Rising demand for resources v. Privatization to motivate production vi. "Necessity begat Property" (scarcity begat property)
1. Need social institution to enforce property rights, so need system of government and law vii. First occupancy - weakest part of chapter because he neglects other ways of allocating property rights d. Demsetz's Account of Evolution of Property Rights (200 years later) i. Open-access + demand = yields overuse ii. Overuse = externality (harm to others) iii. Private (excludable) property would "internalize the externality" (user would have to face the cost of the loss of the resource)
1. We privatize when the benefit of doing so (i.e., the benefit of internalizing the externality) exceeds the cost of doing so (i.e. the costs of negotiation, monitoring, enforcement - transaction costs of ensuring property rights) a. NE Indians - fur trade; animals territories confined to small areas, so cost of internalizing the effect of husbanding these animals is small compared to high commercial value of animals
? productive to establish private hunting lands. b. SW Indians - plains animals are not as commercially valuable, and roam, so high cost of preventing animals from moving to other tracts of land.
2. As benefits rise, have more property
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