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The Role Of Property Rights In Economic Growth Outline

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1. Howard Demsetz---Theory on Property Rights a. Property rights arise when the benefits of internalization exceed its costs(policing)
---Montagne Indians first started claiming individual rights to hunting grounds by blazing trees with their crest in response to European fur trade, which made benefits of internalization high. Increase in beaver fur price had led to overhunting?individual rights to hunting in certain areas. b. Private ownership reduces, but does not eliminate, transaction costs (easier to negotiate with one person than with 1000 over land use) c. Private ownership implies that the community recognizes the right of the owner to exclude others from exercising the owner's private rights d. One primary function of property rights it to guide incentives (tragedy of commons, tradable fishery quotas) e. Demsetz three conditions (which are never really met) i. All property rights are assigned ii. No transaction costs of

1. Trading

2. Enforcing / policing iii. Everyone is rational utility maximizer. Only works if you can monetize everything and include everything on utility curve. iv. Changes in the distribution of wealth do not affect demand patterns.

2. Development / Economic Growth Theorists a. Knack and Keefer---security of property rights and efficiency w/ which govt manages the provisions of public goods are significant determinants of the rate at which an economy grows; institutions that protect property rights are indispensible to investment b. Shihata (World Bank on essential elements of governance)---Certain conditions are needed for a stable business environment and stable modern state. Stability and predictability are essential to the success of investment i. Set of rules which are known in advance ii. Rules actually enforced iii. Procedures to allow for departure from rules or amendment of rules when necessary iv. Conflicts in application resolved by binding decisions of independent arbitral body v. BUT PROF: Maybe stability is not what we're after. Economic growth almost inherently requires INstability. But we do want some predictability and some semblance of fairness and process (even if just through the Communist party in China) for destroying property rights when its in the interests of economic growth. c. De Soto---Costs of Absence of Good Law and Security of Property Rights in Informal Peru

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