Emergence of Digital Institutions

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I had the great pleasure to participate in the International Society for New Institutional Economics’ 9th Annual Conference that took place in my favorite European city Barcelona. Professor Oliver Goodenough from Vermont Law School organized and chaired an interesting panel on the design and function of digital institutions. It turned out that New Institutional Economists, by and large, have not yet explored this topic in such a great detail as one would expect, and Oliver’s session, in fact, was the only one at the conference dealing with cyber-issues at all (which is a bit surprising given the breadth and depth of the conference — check the program.) Oliver did a terrific job in framing the key questions we were talking about – “we” also includes Berkman Fellow John Clippinger, who presented some striking theses about cyber-institutions born out of social networks and their interactions with institutions of the offline world. My own contribution is posted here. Thanks to Oliver, John Clippinger and, last but not least, John Palfrey for making the conversation possible.

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