Development and Underdevelopment in the History of Economic Thought

Ronald Coase’s Concept of the Firm – a Systems Theory Approach

Tchipev Plamen, PU "P. Hilendarski", Plovdiv & Economic Research Institute at The Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia

Ronald Coase’s Concept of the Firm – a Systems Theory Approach More than 80 years after publication of “The Nature of the firm”, it still inspires lively debates. The paper is focused on the central problem of the paper – Coase’s concept of the firm and its relation to the market. Attempting to understand how, and does it, evolve further, the paper discusses the essence of the alternative and compares Coase view to those of O. Williamson and J. Hodgson. Finding out that both views not only represent quite different perceptions, the paper suggests a more radical change of the way the problem is seen. It looks on the firm and market from the point of the General Systems Theory and approaches them as mutually determined rather than alternatively excluding each other.

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Keywords: Keywords: Ronald Coase; Jeffrey Hodgson; Theory of the Firm; Transaction costs; Evolutionary Political Economy, Sysytems Theory

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