The Economy as a Process of Valuation

The Economy as Process of Valuation sheds new light on the potential benefits of concept and theory formation along dynamic and evolutionary lines for understanding economic processes. The emphasis is on aspects of the economy as a process of valuation rather than as a mechanistic result of transcendental forces yielding unique determinate results. The book begins by examining instrumentalism and the process of valuation, arguing that to choose involves the process of valuation. It then focuses on Coases's work on institutions and considers the implications for a variety of subjects including the theory of the firm and the theory and policy of externalities - all aspects of the economy as a process of valuation. This is followed by analyses of the concepts of coercion and cost in economics, with special reference to one agent's interest being another agent's cost. Each elicits key aspects of analysis, valuation and the complexities and conflictual nature of valuation processes and structures. Finally, Kenneth Boulding's work on 'The Image' is examined, arguing that definitions of reality and values derive, in part from language.