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June 2022

Journal of Institutional Economics
Symposium: Institutional Analysis, Market Processes, and Interdisciplinary Social Science
Daniel J. D'Amico and Adam G. Martin
The editors argue that the looser mathematical formalism of heterodox economic approaches provide a unique opportunity for interdisciplinary engagement to investigating and understanding social institutions, outcomes, and complex phenomenon. Scholars with relevant research experiences were invited to investigate a potential union between the more cultural and anthropological disciplines, on the one hand, and the less formalized models of rationality common across heterodox approaches, on the other.

Read all the Symposium papers in the Journal of Institutional Economics, Volume 18, Issue 3.

Journal of Institutional Economics, Vol. 18, Issue 3

May 2022

European Review of Economic History, Vol. 26, Issue 2

European Review of Economic History
The Wild Card: Colonial Paper Money in French North America, 1685-1719
Bryan Cutsinger, Vincent Geloso, and Mathieu Bédard
The authors illustrate that the applicability of a theory of the price level depends on the effective enforcement of legal tender restrictions by examining the case of the first French experiment with monnaie de carte, or playing card money, in its colony of Quebec between 1685 and 1719. Their empirical analysis of the notarized transactions observed indicates that the increased enforcement of legal tender restrictions and the redemption plan in place after 1705 corresponds to statistically and economically significant increases in the share of transactions involving the playing card money, which supports their argument that the legal tender restrictions contributed to rising prices in the colony.

March 2022

Journal of Economics, Race, and Policy
The Political Economy of the Anti-Chinese Movement in California in the Nineteenth Century
Linan Peng
The author develops a model to study the anti-Chinese movement in California by drawing on the previous literature. The model suggests that adverse economic conditions in the labor market, direct competition between Chinese workers and native workers, well-organized native labor, and durable legislation can explain why there was a three-decade time lag between the first wave of Chinese agitation and the passage of the exclusion act.

Journal of Economics, Race, and Policy, Vol. 5, Issue 1

February 2022

European Journal of Law and Economics, Vol. 53, Issue 1

European Journal of Law and Economics
Does Rigidity Matter? Constitutional Entrenchment and Growth
Justin Callais and Andrew Young
The authors estimate the effects of increases in constitutional rigidity (i.e. entrenchment) on subsequent economic growth. Employing matching methods and examining the full set of available treatments, they find little evidence to suggest that constitutional entrenchment has any relationship to economic growth. However, when they exclude autocracies and treatments associated with coups, evidence suggests that greater entrenchment harms growth in countries that are relatively democratic and politically stable.


Rationality and Society
The Peace of God
Andrew Young
The author explores one of the factors that led to the emergence of the Western Europe's medieval constitution: the Peace of God movement. He argues that the movement, initiated by Catholic bishops, was fundamentally important to delineating and stabilizing jurisdictional boundaries, as well as providing them with perceived legitimacy.

Rationality and Society, Vol. 34, Issue 1

January 2022

Public Affairs Quarterly, Vol. 36, Issue 1

Public Affairs Quarterly
Proportionality-Preserving Polycentricity
Daniel D'Amico and Adam Martin
Recent social scientific research has generated important insights about the relationship between institutions and punitive outcomes that are relevant for these dominant punishment philosophies. The authors survey this evidence alongside a framework that explains why more centralized and hierarchically managed institutions are associated with harsher punishments than more polycentric institutions. Centralized criminal justice institutions thus face a greater justificatory burden than polycentric systems.


European Journal of Political Economy
Love on the Rocks: The Causal Effects of Separatist Governments in Quebec
Vincent Geloso and Kevin Grier
The authors use the synthetic control method to assess the effect of the Quebec's separatist party being elected in 1976 and 1994. They find that, relative to the control, both elections of separatist had a small positive effect on economic activity. These findings suggest that violence could be underappreciated in terms of its importance in determining the costs of disintegrations. They further find that the size of the provincial government (relative to GDP) constantly and significantly exceeded the counterfactual.

European Journal of Political Economy, Vol. 71, January 2022


Advances in Austrian Economics, Vol. 26

Advances in Austrian Economics
Contemporary Methods and Austrian Economics
Daniel D'Amico and Adam Martin
This edited volume examines the relationship between Austrian economics and new social scientific methods. Do Austrian critiques of the excessive ambitions of formal theory and empirical measurement still hold water (if they ever did)? Do the findings of these new approaches bolster or undermine distinctively Austrian theories? How should we update our views on the relationship between abstract economic theory and empirical investigations? 

November 2021

The Independent Review
What Is a Classical Liberal Constitution?
John Dove and Andrew Young
The authors examine how constitutional-level arrangements, that classical liberal have favored, influence economic freedom. The results are mixed and highlight the need for systematic and serious study of real world constitutional data.

The Independent Review, Vol. 26, Issue 3


Social Science Quarterly, Vol. 102, Issue 6

Social Science Quarterly
Breaking Up Is Hard to Do: Lessons from the Strange Case of New Zealand
Kevin Grier and Michael Munger
The authors seek to shed light on the consequences of 'Brexit' by developing the realistic counterfactual of New Zealand (NZ) "leaving" a de facto customs union with the United Kingdom in 1973, when the United Kingdom entered the European Economic Communities. They find that, at choosing NZ as the best-case model for the power yet-to-be negotiated trade deals and yet-to-be implemented reforms, Brexit is likely to be economically harmful and the losses will not soon be made up. 

The Effect of Sanctions on Economic Freedom
David Lektzian and Gor Mkrtchian
The authors argue alterations of domestic economies due to sanctions tend to lead to increased state command of the economy and reduced economic freedom. This is because sanctions create opportunities and incentives that encourage target states and firms within them to pursue increased state control of the economy.


Social Science Research Network
Free Market Institute at Texas Tech University Research Paper Series
The Free Market Institute has launched its Research Paper Series in the Social Science Research Network (SSRN). The series includes working research papers authored by faculty, staff, and graduate students affiliated with the Institute.

Subscribe to our quarterly eJournal here.


October 2021

Contemporary Economic Policy, Vol. 39, Issue 4

Contemporary Economic Policy
Does Constitutional Entrenchment Matter for Economic Freedom
Justin Callais and Andrew Young
The authors study how entrenchment - the extent to which constitutions are more costly to change than ordinary policies and institutions - affects levels of economic freedom. Even though they report no significant effects on overall freedom, they find some evidence that entrenchment does lead to smaller government size, more regulation, and weaker property rights.

August 2021

Journal of Institutional Economics 
Laissez les Bons Temps rouler? The Persistent Effect French Civil Law Has on Corruption, Institutions, and Incomes in Louisiana
Justin Callais
The author seeks to offer a clearer explanation for why Louisiana sets itself apart from other states in its politically corrupt environment. He argues that the underlying cause is the historical influence in French civil law, despite occurring over 200 years ago, as it leads to corruption through regulation and centralization of decision-making.

Journal of Institutional Economics, Vol. 17, Issue 4

July 2021

Southern Economic Journal, Vol. 88, Issue 1

Southern Economic Journal
The Legacy of Representation in Medieval Europe for Incomes and Institutions Today
Jamie Bologna Pavlik and Andrew Young
The authors explore why some governments can credibly commit to the rule of law and protection of property rights. They find that experiences with representative assemblies in medieval/early modern Europe is positively correlated with current income levels, a measure of the rule of law and property rights, and the Polity IV index that emphasizes constraints on the executive.

June 2021

Small Business Economics
Evaluating the Effects of Small Business Administration Lending on Growth
Matthew Higgins, Donald Lacombe, Briana Stenardr, and Andrew Young
The authors examine the relationship between SBA lending and local economic growth using a spatial econometric framework and U.S. county-level data. They find evidence that a county's SBA lending per capita is associated with direct negative effects on its income growth and indirect negative effects on the growth rates of neighboring counties. 

Small Business Economics, Vol. 57, Issue 1


The Journal of Developing Areas, Vol. 55, Issue 3

The Journal of Developing Areas
Institutional Quality and Development: On the Role of Informality
Justin Callais, Israt Jahan, and Jamie Bologna Pavlik
The authors argue that the ambiguity of the theoretical effects of the informal sector on development are due to its impacts are conditional on both the size of the locale and the existing institutional environment. They analyze the relationship between formal institutions, informality, and development in 5,505 Brazilian municipalities. When including the conditionality of population size, the authors find that formal institutions and informal production tend to be substitutable in areas with large populations, and complementary in small municipalities.


The Review of Austrian Economics 
Forced Savings and Political Malinvestment: An Application of Steve Horwitz's Microfoundations and Microeconomic
Bryan P. Cutsinger
the author applies the framework of the Austrian business cycle theory from Steven Horowitz's book to the Confederate monetary experience during the U.S. Civil War. Even though there was an excess supply of money, he argues, there is no evidence that it created a credit boom. However, while it is not malinvestment, the author finds evidence of forced savings to allocate credit in the South, which is not consistent with a sustainable capital structure.

The Review of Austrian Economics, Vol. 34, Issue 2

May 2021

The Cost of Free Stuff: Your Freedom!

The Cost of Free Stuff: Your Freedom! 
Edited by Rafael Acevedo
"Economists have long known that "there is no such thing as a free lunch”, but politicians love promising free stuff anyway.  Rafael Acevedo and the other authors of The Cost of Free Stuff superbly show the high costs of many of these promises and that ultimately, these promises can also cost you your freedom." - Benjamin Powell, FMI Executive Director

April 2021

Southern Economic Journal

Symposium: The Political Economy of the COVID‐19 Pandemic
Peter Boettke and Benjamin Powell
The authors introduce a symposium, which seeks to analyze the political economy and institutional environments that lead to governmental policy responses, all over the world, that are inconsistent with recommendations from standard welfare economics.

The Federal Reserve's Response to the COVID‐19 Contraction: An Initial Appraisal
Nicolás Cachanosky, Bryan P. Cutsinger, Thomas L. Hogan, William J. Luther, and Alexander W. Salter
The authors summarize and evaluate the Fed's monetary and emergency lending policies through the end of 2020. They credit the Fed with promoting monetary stability while maintaining it could have achieved something approximating monetary stability without employing its emergency lending facilities. The authors argue some of its facilities were unwarranted and unwise as they primarily intended to allocate credit blurring the line between monetary and fiscal policy. 

Read all the Symposium papers in the Southern Economic Journal, Volume 87, Issue 4.

Southern Economic Journal, Volume 87, Issue 4


Exploration in Economic History, Volume 80, April 2021

Explorations in Economic History
The Cuban Revolution and Infant Mortality: A Synthetic Control Approach
Vincent Geloso and Jamie Bologna Pavlik
The authors employ a synthetic control method to analyze how much of the reduction in infant mortality, if any, can be attributed to the Castro's regime. They find that the infant mortality increased in the first decade of the regime, but reverted after the introduction of Soviet subsidies. However, after a second run of synthetic control test concerning the collapse of the Soviet Union, the authors find that the subsidies played no important role in determining health outcomes.


Contemporary Economic Policy 
Economic Freedom and the Economic Consequences of the 1918 Pandemic
Jamie Bologna Pavlik and Vincent Geloso
The authors analyze the 1918 pandemic and the levels of economic freedom. They argue that higher levels of economic freedom mitigated the pandemic's effect as it meant greater ability to adjust shocks by reducing frictions in the reallocation of resources and the reorganization of economic activity.

Contemporary Economic Policy, Volume 39, Issue 2


Journal of Institutional Economics, Volume 17, Issue 2

Journal of Institutional Economics
The Last Guardian of the Throne: The Regional Army in the Late Qing Dynasty
Linan Peng
The author argues that the developed organizational structure of the Xiang Army played a central role in its rise during the Qing Dynasty. Unlike the imperial arm of the central government, the Xiang Army overcame problems like poor recruitment and training soldiers, lack of incentives of fight in battles, and coordination failure.


TTU FMI Double T Logo

Research Award

Peter Boettke, University Professor of Economics and Philosophy at George Mason University

Texas Tech Today features FMI Research Fellow Andrew Young for his recent achievement in receiving The APEE 2022 Distinguished Scholar Award.

Read the full article here: Texas Tech Free Market Faculty Member Receives Distinguished Scholar Award.

Research Spotlight

Southern Economic Journal, Vol. 87, Issue4
FMI Scholars Contribute to a COVID-19 Symposium Published in Southern Economic Journal

Read all the Symposium papers here: Symposium: The Political Economy of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Free Market Institute at Texas Tech University Research Paper Series

The Free Market Institute has launched its Research Paper Series in the Social Science Research Network (SSRN). The series includes working research papers authored by faculty, staff, and graduate students affiliated with the Institute.

Subscribe to our quarterly eJournal.