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Full-Text Articles in Law

The Promise Principle And Contract Interpretation, Juliet P. Kostritsky Oct 2011

The Promise Principle And Contract Interpretation, Juliet P. Kostritsky

Juliet P Kostritsky

The promise principle and its roots in a certain type of morality of individual obligation, which play the central role in Charles Fried’s vision of Contract law, have importantly contributed to rescuing Contract law from absorption into Tort law and from the imposition of externally imposed standards that are collective in origin. It makes a mammoth contribution to alerting us to the tyranny of interference with individual self-determination. However, this essay questions whether a promise centered system derived from a moral philosophy of promising (without an observable and testable foundation in reality) and geared to internal individual obligation and ...


The Marginalist Revolution In Corporate Finance: 1880-1965, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jul 2011

The Marginalist Revolution In Corporate Finance: 1880-1965, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

During the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries fundamental changes in economic thought revolutionized the theory of corporate finance, leading to changes in its legal regulation. The changes were massive, and this branch of financial analysis and law became virtually unrecognizable to those who had practiced it earlier. The source of this revision was the marginalist, or neoclassical, revolution in economic thought. The classical theory had seen corporate finance as an historical, relatively self-executing inquiry based on the classical theory of value and administered by common law courts. By contrast, neoclassical value theory was forward looking and as a result ...


A Preface To Neoclassical Legal Thought, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jun 2011

A Preface To Neoclassical Legal Thought, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Most legal historians speak of the period following classical legal thought as “progressive legal thought.” That term creates an unwarranted bias in characterization, however, creating the impression that conservatives clung to an obsolete “classical” ideology, when in fact they were in many ways just as revisionist as the progressives legal thinkers whom they critiqued. The Progressives and New Deal thinkers whom we identify with progressive legal thought were nearly all neoclassical, or marginalist, in their economics, but it is hardly true that all marginalists were progressives. For example, the lawyers and policy makers in the corporate finance battles of the ...


Clearings And Thickets, Robert D. Cooter, Aaron Edlin Jun 2011

Clearings And Thickets, Robert D. Cooter, Aaron Edlin

Robert Cooter

Abstract: Intellectual property rights create temporary monopoly power for innovators. Monopoly pricing transfers wealth to the innovator from the innovations buyers -- consumers, producers, and other innovators. For innovations mostly used in consumption and production, the transfer from consumers and producers to innovators increases the profitability of innovating and causes more of it. The welfare gains from faster growth quickly overtake the temporary losses from monopoly’s dead weight loss. Thus intellectual property rights should be strong for innovations mostly used by consumers and producers. In contrast, for innovations mostly used by other innovators, the transfer of wealth from one innovator ...


Clearings And Thickets, Robert D. Cooter, Aaron Edlin Jun 2011

Clearings And Thickets, Robert D. Cooter, Aaron Edlin

Aaron Edlin

Abstract: Intellectual property rights create temporary monopoly power for innovators. Monopoly pricing transfers wealth to the innovator from the innovations buyers -- consumers, producers, and other innovators. For innovations mostly used in consumption and production, the transfer from consumers and producers to innovators increases the profitability of innovating and causes more of it. The welfare gains from faster growth quickly overtake the temporary losses from monopoly’s dead weight loss. Thus intellectual property rights should be strong for innovations mostly used by consumers and producers. In contrast, for innovations mostly used by other innovators, the transfer of wealth from one innovator ...


Rebound In Us Productive Sectors, Harry D. Saunders Jun 2011

Rebound In Us Productive Sectors, Harry D. Saunders

Harry D. Saunders

This presentation describes rebound measurements in the US economy, the dominance of "embedded energy" (production-side energy use), and the economic costs of polices to mitigate rebound effects.


An Income-Based Analysis Of Historical Us Energy Consumption, Harry D. Saunders Apr 2011

An Income-Based Analysis Of Historical Us Energy Consumption, Harry D. Saunders

Harry D. Saunders

This paper introduces a new decomposition of energy consumption to reveal the effects of consumer income levels on energy use. It concludes that the great bulk of energy consumption in the US is embedded in goods and services purchased by consumers and that this component of energy demand is growing more rapidly than direct use of energy by households owing to the preferences of high-income consumers. Significantly, this embedded component of energy demand has historically experienced large rebound magnitudes. The analysis also concludes that energy consumption is driven by more than just income level, with the lowest-income consumers using more ...


The Economics Of Horizontal Government Cooperation (Working Paper), Matthew R. Dalsanto Ph.D. Apr 2011

The Economics Of Horizontal Government Cooperation (Working Paper), Matthew R. Dalsanto Ph.D.

Matthew R. DalSanto, Ph.D.

This paper analyzes the ability of intrastate and interstate cooperative agreements to either minimize or capitalize on interjurisdictional externalities. These agreements are commonly referred to as compacts or joint powers agreements (intrastate compacts). The compact mechanism allows regional governments to enter into contractual agreements with one another to coordinate policy choices and to engage in cooperative endeavors. Given the inter-jurisdictional nature of the issues that affect horizontally situated governments, this mechanism is a powerful tool to achieve welfare-enhancing outcomes for citizens.

A review of the legal case law surrounding compacts is conducted to analyze the legal properties from an economic ...


A Primer On Antitrust Damages, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Mar 2011

A Primer On Antitrust Damages, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This paper considers the theory of antitrust damages and then discusses some simple models for proving them. Antitrust damages theory begins with the premise that many practices alleged to violate the antitrust laws cause no consumer harm. Others are inefficient and have few socially redeeming virtues. Still others may simultaneously increase both the efficiency of the participants and their market power. A perfectly designed antitrust policy would exonerate the first set of practices, condemn the second set, and condemn the third set only when the social cost of the restraint exceeds its social value or they produce net harm to ...


An Economic Perspective On Preemption, Keith Hylton Jan 2011

An Economic Perspective On Preemption, Keith Hylton

Faculty Scholarship

This paper has two goals. The first is to present an economic theory of preemption as a choice among regulatory regimes. The optimal regime choice model is used to generate specific implications for the court decisions on preemption of products liability claims. The second objective is to extrapolate from the regime choice model to consider its implications for broader controversies about preemption.


How Much Does A Belief Cost?: Revisiting The Marketplace Of Ideas, Gregory Brazeal Jan 2011

How Much Does A Belief Cost?: Revisiting The Marketplace Of Ideas, Gregory Brazeal

Gregory Brazeal

Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. is often credited with creating the metaphor of “the marketplace of ideas,” though he did not use the exact phrase and his argument for free speech was not based on distinctively economic reasoning. Truly economic investigations of the marketplace of ideas have progressed in step with developments and trends in the law and economics literature. These investigations have tended to be one-sided, with writers focusing primarily either on the production of ideas (for example, Posner) or their consumption (for example, behavioral law and economics), without considering in depth how producers and consumers interact. This may ...


Collective Choice, Justin Schwartz Jan 2011

Collective Choice, Justin Schwartz

Justin Schwartz

This short nontechnical article reviews the Arrow Impossibility Theorem and its implications for rational democratic decisionmaking. In the 1950s, economist Kenneth J. Arrow proved that no method for producing a unique social choice involving at least three choices and three actors could satisfy four seemingly obvious constraints that are practically constitutive of democratic decisionmaking. Any such method must violate such a constraint and risks leading to disturbingly irrational results such and Condorcet cycling. I explain the theorem in plain, nonmathematical language, and discuss the history, range, and prospects of avoiding what seems like a fundamental theoretical challenge to the possibility ...


Collective Choice, Justin Schwartz Jan 2011

Collective Choice, Justin Schwartz

Justin Schwartz

This short nontechnical article reviews the Arrow Impossibility Theorem and its implications for rational democratic decisionmaking. In the 1950s, economist Kenneth J. Arrow proved that no method for producing a unique social choice involving at least three choices and three actors could satisfy four seemingly obvious constraints that are practically constitutive of democratic decisionmaking. Any such method must violate such a constraint and risks leading to disturbingly irrational results such and Condorcet cycling. I explain the theorem in plain, nonmathematical language, and discuss the history, range, and prospects of avoiding what seems like a fundamental theoretical challenge to the possibility ...


Uncertainty Regarding Interpretation Of The `Negligence Rule' And Its Implications For The Efficiency Of Outcomes, Satish K. Jain Jan 2011

Uncertainty Regarding Interpretation Of The `Negligence Rule' And Its Implications For The Efficiency Of Outcomes, Satish K. Jain

Satish K. Jain

There are two ways that the negligence rule is interpreted. Under one interpretation a negligent injurer is liable for the entire harm to the victim; and under the other interpretation a negligent injurer is liable only for that part of the harm which can be ascribed to his negligence. Both these versions are efficient. However, if there is uncertainty regarding whether the court will be employing the full liability version or the incremental liability version for determining the liability of a negligent injurer, notwithstanding the fact that both the versions are efficient, inefficiency is possible. In the paper necessary and ...


The Structure Of Efficient Liability Rules, Satish K. Jain Jan 2011

The Structure Of Efficient Liability Rules, Satish K. Jain

Satish K. Jain

The purpose of this paper is two-fold. One, to obtain a complete characterization of efficient liability rules within the framework of a model which is essentially the standard tort model with only some minor differences; but with a liability rule notion more general than the standard one. It is shown in the paper that the subclass of efficient liability rules is characterized by the conjunction of two conditions, namely, the condition of negligence liability and the requirement of non-reward for over-nonnegligence. Negligence liability requires that if one party is exactly nonnegligent and the other party is negligent then the negligent ...


Innovation Cooperation: Energy Biosciences And Law, Prof. Elizabeth Burleson Jan 2011

Innovation Cooperation: Energy Biosciences And Law, Prof. Elizabeth Burleson

Prof. Elizabeth Burleson

This Article analyzes the development and dissemination of environmentally sound technologies that can address climate change. Climate change poses catastrophic health and security risks on a global scale. Universities, individual innovators, private firms, civil society, governments, and the United Nations can unite in the common goal to address climate change. This Article recommends means by which legal, scientific, engineering, and a host of other public and private actors can bring environmentally sound innovation into widespread use to achieve sustainable development. In particular, universities can facilitate this collaboration by fostering global innovation and diffusion networks.


Tribes As Essential Partners In Achieving Sustainable Governance, Prof. Elizabeth Burleson Jan 2011

Tribes As Essential Partners In Achieving Sustainable Governance, Prof. Elizabeth Burleson

Prof. Elizabeth Burleson

Indigenous peoples have modeled sustainable development around the world. Incentivizing the innovation and instillation of wind, solar, and other renewable energy sources can come in the form of public funding, including renewable portfolio standards, feed in tariffs and green tag programs. This article analyzes ways in which tribal communities are helping to expand cooperative good governance.


Reflexivity In Financial Markets: A Neuroeconomic Examination Of Uncertainty And Cognition In Financial Markets, Steven Pikelny Jan 2011

Reflexivity In Financial Markets: A Neuroeconomic Examination Of Uncertainty And Cognition In Financial Markets, Steven Pikelny

Senior Projects Spring 2011

Financial markets exist to disperse the risks of an unknown future in an economy. But for this process to work in an optimal fashion, investors – and subsequently markets – must have a way to interpret uncertainty. The investor rationality and market efficiency literature utilizes a methodology inadequate to address this fact, so I supplement it with the perspectives of epistemology, economic sociology, neuroscience, cognitive science, and philosophy of mind. This approach suggests that what is commonly viewed as market “inefficiency” is not necessarily caused by investor irrationality, but rather by the inherent nature of the epistemological problem faced by investors. I ...


Promoting The Buildout Of New Networks Vs. Compelling Access To The Monopoly Loop: A Clash Of Regulatory Paradigms, Christopher S. Yoo Jan 2011

Promoting The Buildout Of New Networks Vs. Compelling Access To The Monopoly Loop: A Clash Of Regulatory Paradigms, Christopher S. Yoo

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

No abstract provided.


Coase, Institutionalism, And The Origins Of Law And Economics, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2011

Coase, Institutionalism, And The Origins Of Law And Economics, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Ronald Coase merged two traditions in economics, marginalism and institutionalism. Neoclassical economics in the 1930s was characterized by an abstract conception of marginalism and frictionless resource movement. Marginal analysis did not seek to uncover the source of individual human preference or value, but accepted preference as given. It treated the business firm in the same way, focusing on how firms make market choices, but saying little about their internal workings.

“Institutionalism” historically refers to a group of economists who wrote mainly in the 1920s and 1930s. Their place in economic theory is outside the mainstream, but they have found new ...


At The Conjunction Of Love And Money: Comment On Julie A. Nelson, Does Profit-Seeking Rule Out Love? Evidence (Or Not) From Economics And Law, William W. Bratton Jan 2011

At The Conjunction Of Love And Money: Comment On Julie A. Nelson, Does Profit-Seeking Rule Out Love? Evidence (Or Not) From Economics And Law, William W. Bratton

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

No abstract provided.


Strategic Delegation Improves Cartel Stability, Martijn Han Dec 2010

Strategic Delegation Improves Cartel Stability, Martijn Han

Martijn A. Han

Fershtman and Judd (1987) and Sklivas (1987) show that strategic delegation reduces firm profits in the one-shot Cournot game. Allowing for infinitely repeated interaction, strategic delegation can increase firm profits as it improves cartel stability.


Short-Term Managerial Contracts And Cartels, Martijn Han Dec 2010

Short-Term Managerial Contracts And Cartels, Martijn Han

Martijn A. Han

This paper shows how a series of commonly observed short-term CEO employment contracts can improve cartel stability compared to a long-term employment contract. When a manager's short-term appointment is renewed if and only if the firm hits a certain profit target, then (i) defection from collusion results in superior firm performance, thus reducing the chance of being fired, while (ii) future punishment results in inferior firm performance, thus increasing the chance of being fired in the future. The introduction of this re-employment tradeoff intertwines with the usual monetary tradeoff and can improve cartel stability. Studying the impact of fixed ...