This volume explores, both in theory and in practice, what “social coordination” is and how public policies can help or hinder the processes of social coordination. In particular, these chapters examine the institutional incentives that motivate public policy decisions and their implementation to achieve specific individual and social goals. Some chapters in this volume are more theoretical, applying insights from the Austrian, Virginia, and Bloomington schools of political economy to public policy issues. Other chapters are more practical, exploring the broader implications of these theories to real-world public policy puzzles. Authored by individuals from a variety of disciplines with diverse interests in public policy, this work includes discussions of topics such as environmental policy, housing policy, and education policy, among others. A unifying theme across the chapters is that policymakers often advise one-size-fits-all solutions to complicated public policy questions but ignore the multitude of incentives faced by the “players of the game” and the subsequent development of diverse forms of social coordination. Social coordination is often left out public policy analysis but is crucial to the success of informal and formal institutional arrangements. The chapters aim to disentangle these issues of social coordination in public policy in theory and practice.
Roberta Q. Herzberg is distinguished senior fellow in the F. A. Hayek Program for Advanced Study in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics in the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.
Gavin Roberts is assistant professor of economics at Weber State University.
Brianne Wolf is assistant professor of political theory and constitutional democracy at Michigan State University.
Introduction: Social Coordination and Public Policy: Explorations in Theory and Practice by Roberta Q. Herzberg, Gavin Roberts, and Brianne Wolf
Part I: Theories and Methods of Social Coordination
Chapter 1: Social Coordination in a Complex Society: A Framework for Action by Emily Chamlee-Wright
Chapter 2: Rawls, Hayek, Buchanan, and Social Justice: From Rules to Recognition by Alexander Köhler
Chapter 3: Are RCTs Missing a Point? Local Knowledge and ComputerAssisted Learning Interventions by Carlos Noyola
Part II: Case Studies in Social Coordination
Chapter 4: Destruction to Beauty: The Polycentric Adaptive Reuse of the Torpedo Factory by Olivia Gonzalez
Chapter 5: Local Constituencies, Lobbying, and the Fight to Keep Local Bases Open during the 2005 Round of Base Closure and Realignment by Julie Thompson-Gomez
Chapter 6: Social Media and Social Movements: How Technology Has Aided Coordination by Ellen Hamlett
Chapter 7: Stakeholder Primacy as a New Institutional Framework for the Entrepreneurial Market Process? by Mikołaj Firlej
Part III: Challenging Social Problems: Environmental and Natural Resource Applications
Chapter 8: Compliance Markets Without Romance: Lessons from the Renewable Fuel Standard by Arthur R. Wardle
Chapter 9: A Calculus of Communication: Deliberation, Knowledge, and Public Choice in the Context of Water Management by Emil Panzaru
Chapter 10: Entrepreneurial Discovery in Land-Use Planning by M. Nolan Gray
How do people effectively coordinate to achieve their diverse goals? The papers in this volume make important contributions to answering this question. Drawing on the framework provided by mainline economics, the contributors offer novel theoretical and applied insights into what facilitates social cooperation, and what constitutes effective public policy. Both scholars and policymakers will find benefit from this important volume.