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October 12, 2009
Economic governance: the organization of cooperation
Elinor Ostrom and Oliver Williamson win Nobel Prize for Economics 2009 on Monday.
Elinor Ostrom has challenged the conventional wisdom that common property is poorly managed and should be either regulated by central authorities or privatized. Based on numerous studies of user-managed fish stocks, pastures, woods, lakes, and groundwater
basins, Ostrom concludes that the outcomes are, more often than not, better than predicted by standard theories. She observes that resource users frequently develop sophisticated mechanisms for decision-making and rule enforcement to handle conflicts of interest,
and she characterizes the rules that promote successful outcomes.