Hernando de Soto and Property in a Market Economy

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  • Edited by D. Benjamin Barros, Widener University School of Law, USA
  • Series: Law, Property and Society
  • Hernando de Soto is one of the world's leading public intellectuals. His books The Mystery of Capital and The Other Path have had a tremendous impact on debates about international development, but his work also has been controversial. One of de Soto's core ideas is that the institution of private property is necessary for the proper functioning of a market economy, yet even though many property scholars closely follow de Soto's work, his ideas have been neglected in property law scholarship and mature market economies like the United States. This new collection seeks to remedy this neglect, bringing together a diverse group of scholars to apply de Soto's work to a wide range of contemporary issues in property law and theory. The important contribution it makes to debates and controversies in property law, as well as in related economic fields, will appeal to scholars of both law and economics.
  • Contents: Introduction, D. Benjamin Barros; The costs of regulation or the consequences of poverty? Progressive lessons from de Soto, Eduardo M. Peñalver; Invasions, innovation, environment, Carol M. Rose; Culture and capitalism: a comment on de Soto, Gregory S. Alexander; Hernando de Soto and the histories of property law, Alfred L. Brophy; Anticipating de Soto: allotment of Indian Reservations and the dangers of land-titling, Ezra Rosser; Leaving the body of property law? Meltdowns, land rushes, and failed economic development, Rashmi Dyal-Chand; The bell jar and the bullhorn: Hernando de Soto and communication through title, Nestor M. Davidson; Red tape and gridlock, Larissa Katz; Mercantilism, American style, Nicole Stelle Garnett; Hernando de Soto, formal property systems, and the intangible asset paradox, Juliet M. Moringiello; The economics of welfare: of Hernando de Soto and Susette Kelo, Denis J. Brion; Bibliography; Index.
  • About the Editor: D. Benjamin Barros is Professor of Law at Widener University School of Law in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. He writes widely on property law and related topics.
  • Reviews: 'In Hernando de Soto and Property in a Market Economy, leading property scholars masterfully illuminate, challenge, and build on de Soto’s work, connecting it to central questions of property theory and social policy. This perceptive and multi-faceted exploration of how ownership works (or fails to work) offers essential insights to anyone interested in property rights and institutions.'
    Lee Anne Fennell, University of Chicago Law School, USA

    'This collection is a rich exploration and critique of Hernando de Soto's contributions to our understanding of the relation between the institution of property and the market economy. It is an essential resource for all interested in the theoretical, social, economic and historical underpinnings of land titling, and more generally property law and institutions, as a tool in economic development.'
    Claire Priest, Yale Law School, USA