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Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg Working Papers in Economics

No 25:
A Microeconomic Analysis of Institutions

Ola Olsson ()

Abstract: This survey paper has three themes; a microeconomic analysis of institutions, an institutional analysis of microeconomics, and a discussion on the scope for an "institutional microeconomics" that takes insights from psychology and older institutional theory into account. Institutions are defined as the long-run rules of the economy that have the character of public goods and whose main function is the reduction of transaction costs. The institutional requirements for the Walrasian equilibrium and for a cooperative solution in a Prisoner’s Dilemma-like game, are thoroughly analyzed. The paper briefly surveys the main results from the OIE and NIE-schools and discusses the possibilities of an interdisciplinarily oriented institutional microeconomics.

Keywords: institutions; microeconomics; Walrasian equilibrium; game theory; (follow links to similar papers)

JEL-Codes: C72; D23; D70; (follow links to similar papers)

24 pages, June 8, 2000

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