Date Posted: June 2008
This chapter in the book PIONEERS OF LAW AND ECONOMICS explores the contributions of Benjamin Klein to law and economics. I explore the intellectual foundations of Klein’s pioneering analysis of the hold-up problem, the theory of the firm, vertical restraints, franchising, and the role of contract terms in facilitating self-enforcement of contractual relationships. I also discuss the significant influence of Klein’s work on antitrust law, as well as its implications for contract interpretation. Klein’s pioneering work over the past 30 years has not only provided us with a much greater understanding of contractual arrangements, but also a model for law and economics scholars and economists interested in explaining real world phenomenon rather than merely producing blackboard insights.