Polycentric Circles Vol. 1, No. 2
Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis

Volume 1, Number 2 July 1995
Edited by: Ray Eliason and Patty Dalecki
Co-Directors: Elinor and Vincent Ostrom


Visiting Scholars 
Staff Changes 
Recent Publications


Local Government "Workshop" to be Established at the University of Victoria, British Columbia

 The Donner Foundation of Canada is providing $450,000 to establish a national Local Government Research Program in the School of Public Administration at the University of Victoria. The program will be called the Local Government Workshop, reflecting the Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis, and will focus on the artisanship of utilizing scholarly research in cooperation with practitioners to deal with real-world problems. The Workshop will be co-directed by Dr. Robert L. Bish, Professor of Public Administration and Economics, and Dr. James C. McDavid, Professor of Public Administration and Dean of the Faculty of Human and Social Development. The program will undertake research across Canada on the provision of local services, assisting municipalities to identify management practices and alternatives which result in the most responsive and efficient service delivery. Research results and information from other countries will be made available to Canadian local governments through a newsletter, The Local Services Research Review, and through a comprehensive user-accessible computerized database containing both references and summaries of important innovations in service delivery. -Charlotte Hess, Librarian for the IU Workshop, is advising on the creation of the Program's electronic database system. Other IU alumni involved include Mark Sproule-Jones, Professor of Political Science at McMaster University in Ontario, and Filippo Sabetti, Professor of Political Science at McGill University in Montreal.

 New Year's Message (12/12/94) from Tai-Shuenn (Spencer) Yang to Vincent:

 I feel very pleased to inform you that I was elected as Provincial Assemblyman in the election of December 3. This is indeed a reward for all the hardship in the past three months. Electoral campaigning is a very complicated procedure in Taiwan. Vote buying and threats of violence sometimes dominate the outcome. To a candidate with a scholar's background, participating in an election of such a kind is similar to interrupting someone else's party. Although I must keep a distance from those "traditional procedures," proudly I won a considerably high vote in the constituency (Taiwan uses the Single Non-Transferable Vote electoral system, and my constituency elects 12 Assemblymen out of 22 challengers).

 New Year's Message (12/14/94) from Branko Smerdel to Vincent:

 Thank you for your message and your words of insight into the situation we all live in. It really looks like the situation on the eve of the World War II, but it seems that very few people remember Chamberlain's "policy of peace" and the fruits it brought to Europe and the World. And all of these thousands of soldiers that would need a rescue force of further tens of thousands only to sneak out from Bosnia and let the country be recognized by the "world community" to be prey to the predator who has so many times disclosed what his real plans are. It would have been ridiculous if it were a movie or a satiric novel. As it is, it makes a real tragedy for Bosnia, its immediate neighborhood, and Europe itself. You are right that Croatia has very limited choices, i.e., only to establish a balance of military power as soon as possible to defend itself from further strikes from Serbia. Thus, we wanted to build democracy, but are destined to live on a kind of military frontier again. Croatia has been judged by Europe according to standards stricter than most of the EU member states would be ready to apply to themselves. I participated in the conference on human rights protection organized by the Council of Europe's Human Rights Directorate, and presented a paper "The Constitution, International Law and the Political Crisis" in which I pleaded for more realistic approaches to the problem than pure juristic analysis of the imaginative world of norms which has been created by international documents, and an active policy in the sphere of human rights which would deal with real problems but not under assumption that such policies depend exclusively on the goodwill of governments. I do not think that these legal experts, seized by their contracts, resolutions and stipulations understood what I was talking about, and they did not like it anyway.

 New Year's Message (12/24/94) from Piotr Chmielewski to Vincent:

 This academic year I am conducting two seminars on institutional analysis. One is a continuation of last year's -seminar: Culture, Sociopolitical Order, Development, Comparative Institutional Analysis (60 hours per year). Five persons attend this seminar. They are very good students. The works of the Workshop create the core of literature of this theoretical-analytical seminar. We also discuss the works of Tocqueville, Commons, North, Olson, and Williamson. This seminar requires from me a lot of work every week but it is very productive for me. My two-year experience in the Workshop has been extraordinarily helpful. However, to conduct this seminar in my native language (especially last year) and to discuss problems of self-governance of society with young people trained in a different tradition has created for me a new kind of understanding of many problems I assumed in Bloomington as evident. Let me say, at this point, that foreign language constrains not only your expression but your deep understanding too. Sometimes I have felt enlightened preparing myself for the seminar and rethinking problems I took as given. It is a very pleasant feeling (you feel at that moment kind of nice itch in your brain). I would say, that just now I can appreciate the intellectual equipment I have received in the Workshop. The major topic of the second seminar on institutional analysis (I am conducting this year) refers to the actual situation in Poland. The title of this seminar is: Self-organizing and Self-governing Capabilities in Contemporary Polish Society (90 hours per year). This research seminar is designed for juniors and seniors and 17 persons attend it (I had to limit the number of participants). During the Fall term, students are trained for basics of institutional analysis. Fortunately, we now have Vincent's Federalizm Amerykanski, Lin's Governing the Commons, Putnam's Making Democracy Work, and Shui-Yan Tang's Institutions and Collective Action. We discuss also some articles written by Kaminski, Inglehart, and Wildavsky on the public, peoples' preferences, and political culture. In the Spring semester, students will conduct empirical research they have designed. Our objectives are Local Commissions for Employment in two districts in Poland. We want to describe their role in several communities. Students will gather data related to the functioning of these Commissions and conduct interviews with key-informants in given communities. Finally, they will prepare a research report. Now about my writing. In order to meet the requirements of my seminars, I decided to write an essay for my students on basic problems of institutional analysis. I wrote 84 pages to reconstruct major assumptions of the new institutional analysis. One of my colleagues, who works in the Institute of Work and Social Issues (this Institute is a part of the Ministry of Work, Wages, and Social Issue), proposed to publish it in their Institute as a small book to teach people involved in public policy. I agreed to publish it as a brochure Principles of New Institutional Analysis. At the same time, my close friend, who is interested in rational choice theory, asked me to write on the new institutional analysis. He has edited a special issue of Studia Sociologiczne (Sociological Study), the best Polish sociological quarterly. This issue is devoted to public choice. Thus, I wrote an article based on the Workshop's approach: "New Institutional Analysis. Its Logic and Basic Principles." After a short struggle (the article has 65 pages and I refused any cuts) the editorial board accepted it. They also asked me to write another article on institutions and rational choice. Just now I am writing an essay— "How Do People Design their Institutions and Build their Social Order?" Let me say that some people in the sociological milieu seem to be very interested in the new institutional analysis. In this situation, I have decided to publish a book on new institutional analysis (it will be my habilitation thesis) that I will complete during summer vacation.

 Goran Hyden, in a letter to Vincent (2/16/95), Writes:

 I wish to thank you so much for your letter of January 25 to which you had kindly appended a series of publications by yourself and colleagues, Wal and Julia Duany. I have now begun to read these items and I am, as always when reading your material, impressed by the clarity and strength of your argument. I was also pleased to receive the papers on Southern Sudan. I see here evidence not only of genuine scholarship but also a deep sensitivity to the need to rethink approaches to development and reconciliation of conflicts in Africa. The writings of the Duanys is very informative and educative, even for someone like me who has been around for a long time. Please pass on my appreciation to them. In many respects, their writings reminded me of Amos Sawyer. It seems to be the same kind of story: true intellectuals unable to make a contribution in their own country for reasons beyond their control.

 Ozren Zunec, in a letter to Vincent (4/9/95), Writes:

 I understand perfectly the bitter tone of your letter. Since we discussed, back in 1987, the Kantian ethics, the "Golden Rule," and the nature of man in Hobbes and in The Federalist, the world has much changed and I am certain that our discussions on the same topics would be different today. It seems also that in many troubled regions of the world principles of rational human behavior have died out. Personally, I am not very much surprised by outbreaks of war around the globe; the war in former Yugoslavia did not come unexpectedly and the careful spectator could have predicted it long ago (in Summer of 1988 I made a bet that there will be war in Yugoslavia). War is a constant phenomenon of the human condition and a standard feature in world history. It will take a lot of time and substantial changes in human minds to eliminate this kind of conflict resolution and it is very unlikely that even our grandchildren will experience these changes. What troubles me more than the war itself is the response to the war by the international community or, to put it in more concrete terms, the interaction of East and West.

 Easter Greetings from Justyna and Wlodek Daab (4/15/95) to Vincent:

 Justyna is teaching two courses in social and organizational psychology, and busy preparing her research project on the relation between personal control, social support, and coping with chronic stress. She also became a member of the Polish Interpreters' Association—you may be pleased to know that among her most important works submitted for evaluation was The Meaning of American Federalism. Among others was a collection of classic readings in sociology and political science, The Power and Society. Apart from that, Justyna still collaborates with consulting firms, to satisfy her need for practical applications of psychological and institutional theory. Last, but not least, she engages in local community activities, as a member of the Board of Jan's non-public school. Wlodek is working hard on a study of privatization for Osrodek Badania Opinii Publicznej's ([OBOP] —English translation; Center for Public Opinion). Up to now, OBOP used to be a part of public TV, and now is being transformed into a separate research company. In a few weeks one of the two largest research organizations—A. C. Nielsen of U.S., or Taylor Nelson AGB of UK—is going to acquire 50 percent of shares in new OBOP. It means that Wlodek remains busy with management, accounting, business law and other new, scary words, which he must translate into the practice of his everyday work.

 Easter Greetings from Su-Ik Hwang (4/15/95) to Lin:

 I am planning to take a leave of absence from August '95 to spend a year in the United States to write an introductory book (in Korean) on the rational choice theory of politics. Ten years ago when I returned from there, no one here knew or cared about rational choice theory. But the situation has changed rather drastically. An increasing number of students and scholars want to know about it, and a number of young scholars returning from the U.S. have joined me in spreading it. Now a comprehensive and systematic introductory book is badly needed. I want to meet the need.

 From James Wunsch in a Letter (5/16/95) to Lin:

 I just finished a theoretically oriented piece for African Studies Review that was earlier returned to me on a revise and resubmit designation. I am also doing book review essays for ASR and JP. The first is on six books recently out that recycle the weakest of the old formal PA stuff, so I'll have some fun and be able to spread the IAD and Workshop word a bit with them. The second isn't as well focused, but it's on two major books dealing with African democratic reform. Then I have some unfinished Nigeria work to do, including the paper from the WOW. By the way, please accept my late but most sincere thanks for all that went into the WOW. It was a wonderful intellectual and personal experience. Lastly, I'm trying to pull together some AID work I did last fall on the concept and field experience with "governance." More on that later! And of course the annual trek to Michigan.

 Rick Wilson, in a Letter to Lin (5/24/95), Writes:

 This past spring I decided to offer "Workshop—Southwest." A cluster of graduate students in my Department asked me to teach a seminar on the "new institutionalism." Since I occasionally do research in the area, I thought it might be fun. I've attached a copy of the syllabus. My first tack with building the seminar was to use Gopher and get onto the Workshop's Gopher site. This allowed me to work through the Fall and Spring syllabi that have been used in the Workshop over the past several years. Second, since much of my focus (and that of the students asking to take the seminar) is on legislative systems, I made a number of changes to accommodate their concerns. As such, the syllabus that I used cuts at the problem in somewhat different ways. Feedback from the course was interesting. Most of the students survived. Their final projects were fairly interesting. One focused on the role of leadership in an assurance game (multiple followers trying to solve a slightly complicated coordination game) where the leader holds different kinds of institutional powers. Another chose to focus on the agenda powers held by leadership in the US Congress and its impact for pushing "party" legislation. A third examined electoral reform in Mexico (reforms in the late 1970s) and tied them to institutional changes in the Mexican legislature.

 Larry Kiser, in a Letter to Lin (5/24/95), Writes:

 I published an article entitled "A Constitutional Theory of Public Enterprise" in Constitutional Political Economy, vol. 5, no. 3, 1994, which is germane to the Workshop's interest in constitutional design. In the article, I regard the issue of public versus private enterprise as a matter for constitutional choice. The resulting theory draws attention away from the usual preoccupation in the literature with economic efficiency and focuses on other issues.

 Janet Landa, in a Letter to Lin (6/6/95), Writes:

 My current research projects include (1) a manuscript on formal and informal contracting practices and contract dispute resolution methods in China's economy in transition; (2) a paper entitled "Trust, Ethnic Trading Networks, and Rational Choice Theory" which was presented at the Law & Society Association Conference, June 1-4,1995, Toronto, and will be published in Steven Medema and Warren Samuels (eds.) How Should Economists do Economics? (Edward Elgar Publishing, forthcoming); (3) co-editing a book (with Gordon Tullock) entitled Research in Bioeconomics: Selected Essays; and (4) presenting three papers at the Western Economic Association International Conference, July 5-9, 1995, San Diego: "Why? Ants Do but Bees Don't" (with Gordon Tullock); "The Bioeconomics of Folk and Scientific Classification" (with Michael Ghiselin); and "Trust and Informal Institutions: A New Approach." I welcome correspondence from Workshoppers. Please write to: Dr. Janet Landa Department of Economics York University 4700 Keele Street North York, Ontario M3P 1P7 CANADA Tel. (416) 736-5083 Fax: (416) 736-5987 email:



BIBLIOGRAPHY (1979) by Paula C. Baker, Elinor Ostrom, and
Robert Goehlert are available free of charge. If you are interested
in obtaining 5-10 copies of this bibliography at no charge, please
contact Patty Dalecki at the Workshop.

IFRI Training Program

 The Workshop held its annual International Forestry Resources and Institutions (IFRI) research training course in Bloomington from January 10 through May 1,1995. The IFRI seminar combines advanced training in the Institutional Analysis and Development approach with training in the practical skills associated with field research, from writing proposals and budgeting to actual on-site research and coding.
The following participants completed the course:
Keshav Adhikari, Nepal
Peter Beck, USA
Maria C. Forsberg Di Silva, Brazil
Nives Dolsak, Slovenia
Clark Gibson, USA
Donnelle Keech, USA
Tom Koontz, USA
Zhu Lee, China
Carrie Pomeroy, USA
Bharat Sharma, Nepal
Patricia Uberhuaga, Bolivia
Cristian Vallejos, Bolivia
Other short-term visitors included:
Pius Kizito, Uganda
Norbert Ross, Germany

 The course was taught by Dusty Becker, Julie England, Joby Jerrells, Tom Koontz, Stacy Land, Lin Ostrom, Charlie Schweik, George Varughese, and Mary Beth Wertime. Course topics included: coding forms; Participatory Research (PRA) methodology; fieldwork in the neighboring community of Needmore, Indiana; introduction to relational databases, database management and the database application. Data entry and designing queries for data analysis was also part of the course. Charlie Schweik helped out with Geographic Information System (GIS) measurements this year and will be helping to complete a GIS map for the practice site this summer.

 Yu-zhuang Deng, an associate professor at the Institute of Public Administration in Beijing, is undertaking a program to facilitate translation and encourage publication in China of works in the Public Choice/Institutional Analysis approach. Wai Fung (Danny) Lam, Zhu Lee, and Xin Zhang together with Yu-zhuang Deng, have formed a working group concerned with basic conceptual problems in achieving translation. We anticipate that this working group will continue through the 1995-96 academic year to cross the intellectual thresholds between the Public Choice/Institutional Analysis Approach and Chinese intellectual traditions. Inquiries can be addressed to Vincent Ostrom.

 Alexander Obolonsky, from the Institute of State and Law in the Russian Academy of Science, was in Bloomington preparing an English language rendition of his book recently published in Moscow on The Drama of Russian Political History. Vincent was working closely with Alexander while working on revisions of his own manuscript, which currently bears the title The Vulnerability of Democracies. The two studies promise to be an interesting complement to each other. The drama of Russian political history demonstrates the persistence of autocracies—a continuing threat to the viability of democracies within Russia and elsewhere.



Wai Fung (Danny) Lam defended his dissertation "Institutions, Engineering Infrastructure, and Performance in the Governance and Management of Irrigation Systems: The Case of Nepal" (to be published by ICS Press) last summer and in March received the Catherine C. Greenough Award for the best dissertation presented in Political Science during 1994. He now has a teaching appointment at Hong Kong University. In addition, Danny presented a paper at the conference on "Government Action, Social Capital Formation, and Third World Development," in Cambridge, Massachusetts, May 5-6, 1995 (see Recent Publications).

 Myungsuk Lee defended his dissertation "Institutional Analysis, Public Policy, and the Possibility of Collective Action in Common Pool Resources: A Dynamic Game Theoretic Approach" in August 1994, and is now teaching at Yeungnam University in Taegu, Korea.

 Sue E.S. Crawford defended her dissertation "Clergy at Work in the Secular City" this past June. She will begin a teaching appointment at Creighton University in the fall. Sue is coauthor with Lin Ostrom of "A Grammar of Institutions," an article scheduled to appear in the American Political Science Review (Vol. 89, No. 3) this September.

 Charlotte Hess, our Workshop librarian, has been awarded tenure.

 Shui-Yan Tang writes that he has been promoted and now has tenure at the University of Southern California.

 Werner Guth has moved from Frankfurt to Berlin. His new address is:

 Prof.Dr. Werner Guth
Institut fur Wirtschaftstheorie
Humbolt-Universitat zu Berlin
Spandauer StraBe 1
D-10178 Berlin
Tel. (+49 30) 2468331
Fax (+49 30) 2468304


Visiting Scholars ( 1995/96 Academic Year)

Lars Carlsson, Department of Political Science, University of Lulea, S-971 87 Lulea, Sweden

 Yu-Zhuang Deng, Ministry of -Personnel PRC, Institute of Public Administration, Hepingli, Beijing, 100045, People's Republic of China

 Lars Engberg, Department of Social Sciences, Roskilde University, P.O. Box 260, DK-4000 Roskilde, -Denmark

Malgorzata Korzycka-Iwanow, -Faculty of Law & Administration, Warsaw University, -Krakowskie Przedmiescie 26/28, 00-927 Warsaw, Poland

 Amos Sawyer, Former President, Interim Government of Liberia

 Branko Smerdel, Faculty of Law, University of Zagreb, Trg Marsala Tita 3, 41000 Zagreb, Croatia

 James Thomson, Associates in Rural Development, Inc., 119 Northwood Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20901

 Xin Zhang, Institute of Public -Administration, Renmin University of China, Beijing 100872, People's -Republic of China


- Internet Access to Workshop -

Workshop information and library databases, including the CPR databases, are available on Gopher at:


 The Workshop Gopher can also be accessed through the Workshop World Wide Web Home Page (which is still under construction) at:


Staff Changes

Stacy Land, our Computing Technology Specialist, left the Workshop in March to become a Business Systems Support Specialist with Farm Bureau Insurance in Indianapolis. Julie England, who was working as our Database Manager over in Woodburn Hall, has moved over to the Workshop main building to be our new Computing Technology Specialist.

 Robin Humphrey, formerly with University Computing Services, has filled Julie England's position in Woodburn.

 Stanra King has left the Workshop to spend more time in her lovely new home near Indianapolis, and Reva White has now assumed Stanra's duties as Editorial -Assistant.

 Clark Gibson will join the Workshop staff as a Research Associate with the IFRI research program as of August 15, 1995.


Colloquia (Spring 1995)

*Paper available by contacting the Workshop.
**Background paper or handout available only.

 *"Credible Commitment to Democratic Development," John T. Williams and Brian K. Collins, IU, January 16.

 "Majority Rule Voting as a Coordinating Mechanism," Roy Gardner, Elinor Ostrom, and James Walker, IU, -January 23.

 *"Toward Understanding Early U.S. National Debt Retirement," Charles J. Myers, Golden Gate University, -January 30

 *"Technological Investments and -Infrastructure Performance: Governing and -Managing Irrigation Systems in Nepal," Wai Fung Lam, IU, February 6

 *"Water Markets: An Economical Approach to Snake River Salmon Recovery," Andrew Herr, IU, February 13

**"The Evolution and the Ecology of Decision Making Under Uncertainty," Leslie A. Real, IU, February 20

 Roundtable on Trust, in lieu of -colloquium February 27 (see Interactions)

 *"Clergy as Local Policy Actors," Sue Crawford, IU, March 6 *"The Puzzle of Gender in Liberal -Theory," Barbara Allen, Carleton -College, March 13

 *"Rethinking Legal Pluralism: Water Property Rights in Northwestern Spain," David Guillet, Catholic University, March 20

 **"The Commons Breakdown in -Mayaland: Causes, Consequences, and Critical Responses," Scott Atran, -University of Michigan, March 27

 **"The Democratic Disciplines: Applying Institutional Analysis at the Macro-Level in Africa," Tjip Walker, IU, April 3

 "Gender, Institutions, and Affirmative Action: From Sex Differences to Gendered Organizational Analysis," Rita Mae Kelly, Arizona State University, April 7

 **"Some Facets of Organizational Restructuring in Government-Owned Enterprises in Malaysia: A Look at Eleven Diverse Enterprises," Zainal A. Mohamed, -Universiti Pertanian, Malaysia, April 10.

 **"Laboratory Evaluations of EPA's Emission Trading Auction," Timothy N. Cason, University of Southern California, April 17.

 *"Unity in Diversity: How to Accommodate Various Ethnic and Religious -Identities in a Universal World Order," Aleksandras Shtromas, Hillsdale College, April 24.



Roundtable on Trust, held at the Workshop on February 27, 1995, in lieu of a Colloquium. Present were Valerie Braithwaite, Australian National University; Karen Cook, -University of Washington; -Robert Frank, Cornell University; Margaret Levi, University of Washington; and Toshio Yamagishi, Hokkaido University, Japan.

 IASCP Meeting in Bodo

 The fourth annual meeting of the International Association for the Study of Common Property held in Bodø, -Norway, on May 25 to 28, 1995, was the occasion for the gathering of numerous Workshoppers from different parts of the world. Audun Sandberg, Nordland University Center and Erling Berge, Trondheim Universities, were co-chairmen who organized the program and acted as hosts for the convention. Among the Workshoppers in attendance were Charlotte Hess, Elinor Ostrom, and Vincent Ostrom from Bloomington; Edella Schlager, University of Arizona; Barbara Allen, Carleton College; Malgorzata Korzycka-Iwanow and Piotr Chmielewski from University of Warsaw; Jamie Thomson from ARD; and many close associates. Lin and Vincent had a lovely dinner with Bente Lunde and Hans Petter Saxi. Two field trips, one on fishing in the Lofoten Islands and another on pastoral agriculture in the Beiarn Valley, were accompanied by lectures on historical and institutional arrangements applicable to water and land resources. As an intellectual endeavor, the Bodø meeting was for many of us the best intellectual conference we have had the privilege to attend. To observe the sun as a fireball just above the horizon at 11:30 p.m. was a memorable aesthetic experience for most of us. The weather for the period of the meeting was perfect. The next meeting of the IASCP will be held in Berkeley, California, June 5-9, 1996.


 Vincent traveled from Bodø to Warsaw with Piotr Chmielewski and Malgorzata Korzycka-Iwanow. Piotr is at the Institute of Sociology, University of Warsaw, teaching seminars on institutional analysis and has recently begun a study of the -common-property institutions of the mountaineers of the Tatra Mountains in the south of the country. Immense changes have occurred in Poland. Within a short walking distance of Piotr's home, there are two new shopping centers filled with the shops of small proprietors offering an extraordinary array of high quality merchandise, much in contrast to the state store that Vincent and Lin patronized while in Poland less than ten years ago. The Policja of today, on the other hand, markedly resemble the Milicja of an earlier period. Individual citizens still bear extraordinary costs in their efforts to protect themselves against organized crime. Warsaw's new airport is served by those taxis that charge twenty times the going price for standard cab fares. Lincoln Steffen's presumption that police and organized crime form natural alliances appears to offer a plausible hypothesis about profit making and rent seeking in the public sector. Vincent was able to renew conversations with Antoni Kaminski, Justyna and Wlodek Daab, and -Malgorzata Korzycka-Iwanow, each of whom is engaged in pioneering new intellectual adventures that offer considerable promise for the future of Poland and our understanding of the place of institutional arrangements to the future course of human affairs. -Piotr's mother-in-law served the best -Polish cuisine that Vincent has ever enjoyed.


 While Vincent was in Warsaw, Lin traveled to Stockholm to work with Robert Costanza, Margaret McKean, Bobbi Low, and Jim Wilson at the Beijer -Institute located in the Swedish Academy of Sciences. During the week, they developed a first prototype of a simulation model of a linked ecosystem and human system using a similar theoretical language to describe the stocks, flows, controls, and attributes of both types of systems and their interactions. They utilized a programming language, STELLA, which is ideally suited to the problem of scholars from different traditions getting together around a computer and trying to develop a common approach to complex systems that adapt to internal and external events over time. A working paper will be available soon and they are developing the beginnings of a book on this project. The creative juices were helped greatly with spring coming to Stockholm in full bloom.


 Lin, Vincent, and Gary Wamsley, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, participated as visiting scholars in a summer school sponsored by the Netherlands Interuniversity Institute of Government on "Problem-solving and Problem-grasping Government" held at Leiden University, June 6- 10, 1995. Students working on dissertations and faculty from the Agricultural University of Wageningen, Technical University of Delft, Erasmus University of Rotterdam, Free University of -Amsterdam, University of Leiden, Tilberg University, University of Twente, and University of Utrecht were involved. The sessions combined a focus on -problematics in public administration with a discussion of specific problems being addressed by scholars working on their dissertations. A surprisingly effective dialogue among students and faculty occurred in a short span of five days. Dr. Jos Raadschelders, a frequent Bloomington visitor from Leiden University, and Dr. J.L.M. Hakvoort from Rotterdam University, were the organizers responsible for the summer school.


 In Rome, Lin and Vincent renewed acquaintances with Simona and Robert Agger. Vincent and Bob resumed their conversations of some 40 years ago when Lasswell and Kaplan's Power and Society were at the core of their efforts to engage in the study of community power structures as inquiries about rulers and ruled. Vincent's concern with Lasswell's treatment of the concept of "Power" in his current work was the focus of attention as he and Bob again worked their way through Power and Society. These discussions set the agenda for what needs to be done on Vincent's manuscript that has variously borne the title of The Meaning of Democracy and The Vulnerability of Democracies. Simona's Urban Self-Management ties the interest of an architect to institutional arrangements as those are constitutive of urban places. Hassan Fathy's Architecture for the Poor: An Experiment in Rural Egypt is an intellectual gem discovered in their visit with the Aggers.

 Anil Gupta writes to announce the International Conference on Creativity and Innovation at Grassroots Level, to be given December 1996- -January 1997. Topics include: formal and informal knowledge systems, ecological entrepreneurship, intellectual property rights of grassroots innovators, and a host of related issues. "The idea is that all aspects of creativity and innovation in the context of sustainable development in general and of rural society in particular are discussed." For more information contact: Anil K. Gupta, Co-ordinator, SRISTI (Society for Research and Initiatives for Sustainable Technologies and Institutions) & Honey Bee -network c/o Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad - 380 015, INDIA Tel.: 469079 (r), 407241 (ext. 4922, 4927, 4930) office Fax: 91-79-427896

 Do We Really Want to Consolidate Urban Areas?

 [It's like deja vu all over again.]
by Roger B. Parks
In Spring 1970, an intrepid band of graduate and undergraduate students, ably led by Lin Ostrom, set forth on the streets of Indianapolis and its close suburbs. Their task was to collect data relevant to the question of whether police services were better supplied by large, highly-professionalized bureaus or by much smaller departments characteristic of most of suburban America. In the face of recent [then] and recurring recommendations for consolidation of police forces, other public services, and local governments in urban areas, this venture might seem quixotic, but it was instead quite productive. From it sprang a stream of Workshop research that kept many of our friends employed. This research also, we believe, helped to change the tenor of debates over how to organize policing in urban areas and, more broadly, whether consolidation of local governments in metropolitan areas was the unmixed blessing perceived by its proponents. SPEA's Center for Urban Policy and the Environment completed a household survey of nearly 4,000 residents of Indianapolis and Marion County in 1993. The survey allows a partial replication of the Ostrom et al., 1970 research. The data supply evidence for the old saw, "the more things change, the more they stay the same" (see table on p. 8). More residents of the independent communities that adjoin the Indianapolis Police Services District (approximately the pre-Unigov City) thought their police were doing an outstanding or good job in 1970 than did their neighbors in matched neighborhoods just inside the district. In 1993, more residents of the independent communities thought their police services were excellent or good. The questions are slightly different, but the patterns are essentially the same. The policy explanations for these differences, too, continue to be the same. The independent communities put a high proportion of their sworn personnel on the streets, patrolling and available to respond to service calls. Indianapolis, despite its commitment to community policing, still assigns many officers to specialized tasks, thereby lowering its on-street presence. The difference is reflected in citizen knowledge of police who work in their neighborhoods—50 to 60 percent of those who live in the independent communities say they know officers by name or by sight; in Indianapolis, the percent is 25 to 35. With apologies to Yogi Berra for the subtitle, I note that most public debates have a tendency to reoccur. In the last few years, colleagues at the Universities of Kentucky and North Carolina [Bill Lyons and Dave Lowery] have made more than a cottage industry of comparisons between fragmented Louisville and consolidated Lexington, with their results said to favor consolidated metro government. A recent book by Albuquerque's former mayor, David Rusk, is but one of a resurgence of calls for metropolitan consolidation. Neal Peirce is advocating consolidation in several metro areas. Beurt SerVass, one of the architects of the Indianapolis Unigov reform, recently claimed it to be time to move further by consolidating police services there. In 1993, as in 1970, our data show these recommendations are not well grounded, at least not in the context of one important local public service.


Evaluation of Neighborhood Police - 1970 and 1993

1970: I think police   An            A         An        An          [n]

in this neighborhood   Outstanding   Good      Adequate  Inadequate     

are doing ... [%]      Job           Job       Job       Job       

Independent Communities

Beech Grove            28            37        33        3            [98]

Lawrence               36            39        21        3            [127]

Speedway               29            53        17        -            [144]

Indianapolis Neighborhoods

Near Beech Grove       15            42        34        10           [89]

Near Lawrence          11            40        43        6            [11]

Near Speedway          12            44        34        11           [119]

1993: Would you     Excellent      Good           Fair           Poor           [n]

say that police

services in

your area are ... [%]

Independent Communities

Beech Grove         48             40             9              3              [97]

Lawrence            28             53             16             3              [104]

Speedway            49             42             7              2              [104]

Indianapolis Neighborhoods

Near Beech Grove    19             58             19             4              [100]

Near Lawrence       8              51             33             9              [104]

Near Speedway       29             47             21             3              [112]


 Polycentric Circles extends appreciation and congratulations to its readership. The voluntary contribution mechanism -instituted to fund this newsletter has been a resounding success. -Voluntary contributions from you, our readers, made this issue possible.



Gardner, Roy. 1995. Games for Business and Economics. New York: John Wiley.

 Keohane, Robert O., and Elinor Ostrom, eds. 1995. Local Commons and Global Interdependence: Heterogeneity and Cooperation in Two Domains. London: Sage.

 Olowu, Dele, Kayode Soremekun, and Adebayo Williams, eds. 1995. Governance and Democratisation in Nigeria. Ibadan, Nigeria: Spectrum Books.

 Schneider, Mark, and Paul Teske with Michael Mintrom. 1995. Public Entrepreneurs: Agents for Change in American Government. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Wunsch, James, and Dele Olowu, eds. Forthcoming 1995. The Failure of the Centralized State: Institutions and Self-Governance in Africa. 2d ed. San Francisco: ICS Press.

 Jillson, Calvin, and Rick K. Wilson. 1994. Congressional Dynamics: Structure: Coordination, and Choice in the First American Congress, 1774-1789. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.

 Landa, Janet T. 1994. Trust, Ethnicity, and Identity: Beyond the New Institutional Economics of Ethnic Trading Networks, Contract Law, and Gift-Exchange. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.

 Ostrom, Elinor, Roy Gardner, and James Walker. 1994. Rules, Games, and Common-Pool Resources. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.

 Sowerwine, Jennifer, Ganesh Shivakoti, Ujjwal Pradhan, Ashutosh Shukla, and Elinor Ostrom, eds. 1994. From Farmers' Fields to Data Fields and Back: A Synthesis of Participatory Information Systems for Irrigation and Other Resources. Proceedings of an International Workshop held at the Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science (IAAS), Rampur, Nepal, March 21-26, 1993. Colombo, Sri Lanka: International Irrigation Management Institute (IIMI), and Rampur, Nepal: IAAS.



*Blomquist, William, and Roger B. Parks. 1995. "Unigov: Local Government in Indianapolis and Marion County, Indiana." In The Government of World Cities: The Future of the Metro Model, ed. L. J. Sharpe, 77-89. New York: John Wiley.

 *Firmin-Sellers, Kathryn. 1995. "The Concentration of Authority: Constitutional Creation in the Gold Coast, 1950." Journal of Theoretical Politics 7(2) (April): 201-22.

 Lam, Wai Fung. 1995. "Institutional Design and Collective Actions: A Study of Irrigation Associations in Taiwan" (see Transitions). Paper forthcoming as "Institutional Design of Public Agencies and Coproduction: A Study of Irrigation Associations in Taiwan" in World Development. *McKean, Margaret, and Elinor Ostrom. 1995. "Common Property Regimes in the Forest: Just a Relic from the Past?" Unasylva 46(180) (Jan.), 3-15.

 *McLean, Iain, Alistair McMillan, and Burt L. Monroe. 1995. "Duncan Black and Lewis Carroll." Journal of Theoretical Politics 7(2) (April): 107-23.

 *Ostrom, Elinor. 1995. "Self-organization and Social Capital." Industrial and Corporate Change 4(1):131-59.

 *Robertson, Peter J., and Shui-Yan Tang. 1995. "The Role of Commitment in Collective Action: Comparing the Organizational Behavior and Rational Choice Perspectives." Public Administration Review 55(1) (Jan./Feb.): 67-80.

 *Swindell, David W., and Roger B. Parks. 1995. "Neighborhoods and Unigov." In The Hudnut Years in Indianapolis 1976-1991, ed. William H. Hudnut III, 153-63. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

 *Tang, Shui-Yan. 1995. "Informal Credit Markets and Economic Development in Taiwan." World Development 23(5):845-55.

 Bester, Helmut, and Werner Guth. 1994. "Is Altruism Evolutionarily Stable?" Center for Economic Research Discussion Paper, December (No. 94103) ISSN 0924-7815.

* Reprints available

 If you would like to help fund the printing and distribution of the Workshop Newsletter, please send a donation ($10.00 annually) to help cover the costs.

Please make checks payable to:

Indiana University {designating "Workshop Newsletter Fund"}.

 Your support is deeply appreciated.


 Remember, to make this a newsletter from the broad Workshop family, we need your help. Please send us brief notes regarding recent publications, new research projects, changes in location, or other information you think would be appropriate to be communicated to our colleagues. Brief summaries of research findings are particularly welcome. Depending on the volume of materials we receive, we will include as much of this information as we can.

Submission date: Please send items to Ray Eliason at the Workshop address by October 16, 1995. Or, if you prefer, email your information to:


 For all of you Internet users, please send a brief email message to: Please include in your note the following: (1) mailing address, (2) phone number, and (3) FAX number. This will help us maintain accurate records.

 Polycentric Circles
Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis
Indiana University
513 North Park
Bloomington, IN 47408-3895 USA
Phone: (812) 855-0441
FAX: (812) 855-3150

Back to the Workshop Homepage
Copyright 1997, Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis
Last updated:  September 24, 1997