The book enhances current economic understanding of the firm as an institution and an organization, looking beyond the narrow boundaries of neoclassical economics to an interdisciplinary approach based on accounting and law as well as economics itself. It represents the first synthesis of the authors' research work on the subject and provides the groundwork for the development of a comprehensive framework centred on the firm as an entity.
The volume starts with a synthesis and a critique of the current state of the different economic theories of the firm and further develops them through new insights and neglected lessons from different traditions of thought.
The economic theory and analysis of the firm is given new life here by looking at the firm as a whole: as an institution and an organization, which has special functions and a distinct role in the economy and society.
Table of Contents
Part 1: Introduction - The Firm as an Entity 1. Back to the Enterprise Entity 2. The Economic Theory of the Firm as an Entity. An Overview of the Volume Part 2: On the Economic Theory of the Firm as an Institution and an Organization 3. The Current State of the Economic Theory of the Firm: Contractual, Competence-based and Beyond 4. (reprint): Organisations and Markets Journal of Economic Perspectives, 5 (2), spring 1991 5. (reprint) Accounting and its Relationship to General Equilibrium Theory in M. Shubik ed. Accounting and Economics 6. (reprint) Accounting and the Theory of the Firm, Journal of Accounting and Economics, no 12, 1990 7. (reprint) The Impact of the Corporation on Classical Economic Theory, Quarterly Journal of Economics, 79 (1) 1965 Part 3: Perspectives for Accounting, Law and Economics: Lessons from the Past 8. Economia Aziendale and Betriebwirtschaftslehre as Autonomous Sciences of the Firm 9. The Firm between Law and Economics. An Overview of Selected Legal-Economic Scholars of the Past 10. A Historical Perspective on Corporate Form and Real Entity: Implications for Corporate Social Responsibility 11. (reprint) The Theory of Enterprise Entity, Columbia Law Review, 47 (3), 1947 12. (reprint) The Trouble With Profit Maximization, Harvard Business Review, 38 (6), 1960 13. (reprint) The Entrepreneur: The Firm, Journal of Political Economy, 52 (2), 1944 Part 4: Essays on Economic, Legal and Accounting Features of the Firm as an Entity 14. Accounting and the Economic Nature of the Firm as an Entity 15. Some Building Blocks for a Theory of the Firm as a Real Entity 16. The Firm as an Entity and the Law: The Economic Substance, the Legal Forms 17. Economics and Finance of the Firm as an Entity 18. The Corporate Governance of the Firm as an Entity: Old Issues for the New Debate
"This multi-author volume is a useful and thought- provoking contribution to the analysis and understanding of the firm."
Michael Dietrich, University of Sheffield
"The editors and contributors to this book present a compelling body of evidence for moving toward a more holistic approach to the theory of the firm as a real entity in contrast to the contractual or agency based view common today. They propose that a holistic view is more likely to accommodate the dynamic reality of how firms behave in today’s economy."
Gregory A. Jonas, Case Western Reserve University