Labor, Management, and Social Policy: Essays in the John R. Commons Tradition

Labor, Management, and Social Policy: Essays in the John R. Commons Tradition

Labor, Management, and Social Policy: Essays in the John R. Commons Tradition

Labor, Management, and Social Policy: Essays in the John R. Commons Tradition

Excerpt

John R. Commons has been acclaimed as the founder and principal exponent of "institutional economics" in the United States. Although one may find widespread agreement with this statement, there win be considerably less agreement on selection of a central theme of his work. He has been known as a pragmatist, theorist, and historian, as well as an institutionalist. His multidisciplinary interests have focused on economics and law, but they have also included political science, sociology, and psychology. His work as a scholar and, frequently, as an activist has included concentration on taxation, banking institutions, political processes, and administrative commissions, in addition to his study of labor and general economic analyses. There is little wonder, then, that Commons' contributions may appear to be diffused and that some question the dimensions of his role in the development of economic thought.

Two aspects of Commons' work which stand out clearly, however, prompt this volume of essays, written to mark the centennial of his birth in 1862. None can deny the profound impact of Commons and his associates on the study of unionism, collective bargaining, and labor-social legislation; and there are few scholars whose activities were so closely . . .

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