Table of Contents

Economic Behavior, Economic Freedom, and Entrepreneurship

Economic Behavior, Economic Freedom, and Entrepreneurship

Edited by Richard J. Cebula, Joshua Hall, Franklin G. Mixon Jr and James E. Payne

Expert editors add to an important field of research, the economics of entrepreneurship, and explore how institutions influence entrepreneurial behavior. This book provides comprehensive and contemporary insights into the interaction between economic behavior of firms and households, economic freedom, and entrepreneurship, and how it generates an environment with greater opportunities for growth and development for individuals, households, and private-sector firms.

Chapter 5: Institutions and entrepreneurship

Randall G. Holcombe

Subjects: economics and finance, austrian economics, economics of entrepreneurship, political economy


A recent scholarly literature notes that the institutions of economic freedom lay at the foundation of the capitalist system that generates economic progress and prosperity. Two broad lessons come from this literature. One is that there are specific institutional requirements that must be met for a market economy to function well. The second lesson is that a well-functioning market economy does more than just find equilibrium prices and quantities – it coordinates the decentralized decision-making of all individuals in an economy so that the economy as a whole can make best use of that decentralized knowledge held by each individual. This freedom to make decisions based on their own best judgment, given the information that is available to them, enables the entrepreneurship that generates economic progress. An institutional approach to economic analysis implies a change in the way economists look at what a well-functioning economy accomplishes.

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