Economic Policy

The Varieties of Capitalism Paradigm: Explaining Germany's by M. Allen

By M. Allen

How do the environments during which companies function situation their good fortune or failure? Such questions have lengthy been of curiosity within the fields of commercial, economics and politics. they've got won in value due to heightened aggressive pressures linked to "globalization". whereas a few see definite associations as burdens, others see them as a blessing. This booklet completely examines the most claims of crucial contribution--the kinds of Capitalism paradigm--to this debate in recent times.

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Extra resources for The Varieties of Capitalism Paradigm: Explaining Germany's Comparative Advantage? (New Perspectives in German Studies)

Example text

EspingAndersen and Regini (2000: 3) have, for instance, noted that, in some cases, ‘a minor adjustment of existing policies (like reducing the duration of unemployment benefits) may suffice to achieve intended goals’. This latter issue of minor reforms within systems resulting in relatively large changes has important conceptual and methodological consequences for the varieties of capitalism paradigm. For instance, that framework stresses that the benefits that accrue from one institution are likely to rely on the presence of other institutions.

Some writers within transaction cost economics have argued that, because transaction costs will always hinder the spread of information, it cannot, ipso facto, be assumed that actors will ever have perfect information (Furubotn and Richter, 1998: 453–82). The fact that actors do not have access to complete information means, therefore, that they cannot be completely rational. Within the transaction costs approach, Williamson has distinguished between three forms of rationality: maximizing rationality, bounded rationality, and organic rationality (Williamson, 1985: 44–7).

All these problems deal with asymmetric information and, therefore, with transaction costs and bounded rationality. As noted earlier, it would appear to be impossible to combine elements of neo-classical economics with parts of transaction cost economics as this leads to contradictory assumptions being made about actor rationality (but cf. North, 1990). Moreover, it can also lead to contradictory assumptions being made about the amount of information available to actors and actor opportunism. For instance, if actors are assumed to be fully informed, it is impossible for actors to engage in opportunistic behaviour, as other actors will be aware of this.

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