This important text develops an institutional response to the core issues raised in public policy making and develops a distinct understanding of the role of institutions, not least in the study of environmental problems. It questions: how are conflicting interests shaped and taken into account in policy making? How should they be accounted for? What motivates the behaviour of firms and individuals, and how is it possible to change these motivations to produce the favoured common outcomes?
The author addresses these questions by integrating elements from classical institutional economics, neoclassical economics, sociology and ecological economics. He argues that public policy in general, and environmental policy in particular, are best examined from an institutional perspective. In this way the author presents a distinct and consistent alternative to standard neoclassical economics for students and scholars who are interested in an institutional understanding of environmental policy making. The book is written in a clear and accessible style with boxes and figures to help explain the issues and, as such, would be an ideal alternative or supplement to the standard environmental economics texts.
Arild Vatn, Professor of Environmental Sciences, Department of International Environment and Development Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, As, Norway
Contents: Preface 1. Institutions: The Web of Human Life Part I: Understanding Institutions 2. Institutions: The Individual and the Society 3. Institutions: Coordination and Conflict 4. Institutional Economics: Different Positions Part II: From Institutions to Action 5. Rationality 6. Preferences and Values Part III: From Action to Institutions 7. Explaining Institutional Change 8. Evaluating Institutional Change: The Normative Aspect of Institutions Part IV: Institutions, Environment and Policy 9. The Environment 10. Resource Regimes 11. Valuing the Environment 12. Comparing Value Articulating Institutions 13. Policy and Policy Measures 14. Policies for a Sustainable Future References Index