November 2009: Publication of "Government & Markets: Toward a New Theory of Regulation"

As the financial crisis has shown, neither traditional market failure models nor public choice theory, by themselves, sufficiently inform or explain our current regulatory challenges, nor point us toward the best solutions. Regulatory studies, long neglected in an atmosphere focused on deregulatory work, are in critical need of new models and theories that can guide effective policymaking. This interdisciplinary volume points the way toward the modernization of regulatory theory: its essays, by leading scholars in a number of fields, move past predominant approaches to integrate the latest research about the interplay between human behavior, societal needs, and regulatory institutions. The book concludes by charting a research agenda for scholars that would better incorporate emerging perspectives on government regulation, with the hope of sparking sustained academic engagement on questions of regulation and the economic role of the state.

Drawn from papers from Tobin’s 2008 Government & Markets conference, Government & Markets: Toward a New Theory of Regulation (Cambridge University Press) integrates the latest research about the interplay between human behavior, societal needs, and regulatory institutions. It is part of a larger effort to advance new ideas in the academy and spark critical research on critical, unanswered questions on regulation and the economic role of the state.

The volume has been downloaded by the thousands ahead of release. Popular chapters include: Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz’s (Columbia University, Economics) elaboration of new directions in the theory of market failure, economics graduate student Jessica Leight’s (MIT) challenge to conventional wisdom regarding public choice theory and the economic role of the state, legal scholar Yochai Benkler’s (Harvard Law School) exploration of ways new networked technologies can harness the cooperative potential of social groups.

Read excerpts, download chapters, or order the book »

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