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Complexity and the Art of Public PolicySolving Society's Problems from the Bottom Up$
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David Colander and Roland Kupers

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780691169132

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691169132.001.0001

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Laissez-Faire Activism

Laissez-Faire Activism

(p.214) Chapter 12 Laissez-Faire Activism
Complexity and the Art of Public Policy

David Colander

Roland Kupers

Princeton University Press

This chapter reconsiders the structure and governance issues of corporations and enterprises more generally as a concrete example of how a complexity approach changes the way we think about policy. It shows how a small change in the ecostructure, especially when applied at the formative embryonic stage of emerging institutions, can fundamentally change society from the bottom up, without massive state intervention. It argues that over time in some important sectors of the economy where social goals are important, existing for-profit and nonprofit enterprises can be replaced by socially friendly for-benefit enterprises, which are designed to allow social goals to be achieved in a sustainable way from the bottom up. The goal of the policy being advocated is to encourage the development of an institutional environment that is friendly to bottom-up policy solutions so that new socially focused enterprises can emerge and develop.

Keywords:   complexity policy, complexity science, economic policy, ecostructure

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