Until the summer 2019, the PELIO Program (Political, Economic and Legal Institutions and Organizations) was directed by Cyanne Loyle, who launched the program and started building a community. In Fall 2019, Gustavo Torrens took over as the interim director and started to develop the program in new directions—the first being to shorten the name to Political Economy Program.
Below are some of the changes we will introduce to better serve the Ostrom Workshop community, and to foster the legacy of Elinor and Vincent Ostrom and a provocative but rigorous research agenda on institutional analysis. We hope these changes will improve the program and contribute to make the Ostrom Workshop a hub for innovative research on institutions and the exchange of ideas and methodologies from different fields of study.
- Focus on Big Picture Questions. Moving forward, the Political Economy Program will focus on big picture/fundamental questions related to long run economic and political development such as: What are the fundamental determinants of long run economic performance? Why some countries/regions are rich and others poor? What is the role of economic and political institutions on long run economic performance and development? What are the key mechanisms that generate institutional persistence and/or trigger institutional change?
- Topics. Given the broad focus of the program it is crucial to have some structure. Each academic year we will select one or two topics and organize the activities of the program around these topics. Several topics have been already proposed and are under consideration for the 2020-2021 academic year: role of special interests’ groups in democracies and autocracies; the role of trust in institutional development; the revival of populism; among others. If you have suggestions, please email us.
- Annual Lecture. We will also launch an annual lecture offered by a top scholar who has done path breaking research on our yearly selected topics. We hope that this will significantly improve the visibility to the program.
- Grants and Seminar. We have already started to form small groups of researchers with the explicit goal of identifying research overlaps that will lead to grant proposals. If you have not been contacted yet, it only means that we will be contacting you soon! There are many advantages of submitting grant proposals through the Ostrom Workshop (e.g., lower indirect cost, support in all stages of the grant life cycle, collaborations with multiple fields, and the reputation of the Ostrom Workshop). In the long run we also plan to build a seminar focused on fundamental questions related to long run economic and political development. More about this coming soon.