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Polycentricity and the Meaning of Self-Governance: The Role of the Calculus of Consent in Elinor Ostrom's 'Design Principles'

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Type: Conference Paper
Author: Tarko, Vlad
Conference: Workshop on the Ostrom Workshop 5
Location: Indiana University, Bloomington
Conf. Date: June 18-21, 2014
Date: 2014
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/9400
Sector: Social Organization
Subject(s): polycentricity
majority rule
Abstract: "Why are certain issues addressed by markets, others by politics, and others by courts? Why do hybrid institutions such as independent regulatory agencies, judicial review, and private arbitration courts also exist? Why are certain issues addressed at the local levels, while others at the federal level? This paper explains how to use the calculus of consent model to answer such questions, and argues that the calculus of consent provides the general framework for explaining all institutional diversity. Institutional effciency is dened as the dierence between the de facto decision rule, as it exists thanks to actual institutions, and the optimal calculus of consent rule. To analyze institutional change and political reform, one looks at whether various available collective choice mechanisms can in fact change the de facto decision rule, bringing it closer to the optimal rule."

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