Pragmatic methodology: a sketch, with applications to transaction cost economics
I address the topic of pragmatic methodology as a practitioner in applied microeconomics who has been working in the still nascent field of the 'economics of organization'. My purpose is both to make explicit the methodology out of which transaction cost economics works and to suggest that other theories of economic organization do the same. Conceivably convergence will develop in the process, maybe even a consensus. At a minimum, it will be useful to have each implicit methodology made explicit. I begin with some contrasting views on methodology. Section 2 sets out the rudiments of pragmatic methodology. Section 3 examines how transaction cost economics responds to the four precepts of pragmatic methodology. Additional methodological considerations that are posed by transaction cost economics are discussed in section 4. Concluding remarks follow.
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