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Exit, Voice, and Loyalty: Responses to Decline in Firms, Organizations, and States

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

An innovator in contemporary thought on economic and political development looks here at decline rather than growth. Albert O. Hirschman makes a basic distinction between alternative ways of reacting to deterioration in business firms and, in general, to dissatisfaction with organizations: one, "exit," is for the member to quit the organization or for the customer to switch to the competing product, and the other, "voice," is for members or customers to agitate and exert influence for change "from within." The efficiency of the competitive mechanism, with its total reliance on exit, is questioned for certain important situations. As exit often undercuts voice while being unable to counteract decline, loyalty is seen in the function of retarding exit and of permitting voice to play its proper role. The interplay of the three concepts turns out to illuminate a wide range of economic, social, and political phenomena. As the author states in the preface, "having found my own unifying way of looking at issues as diverse as competition and the two-party system, divorce and the American character, black power and the failure of 'unhappy' top officials to resign over Vietnam, I decided to let myself go a little."

Synopsis:

An innovator in contemporary thought on economic and political development looks here at decline rather than growth. Albert O. Hirschman makes a basic distinction between alternative ways of reacting to deterioration in business firms and, in general, to dissatisfaction with organizations: one-exit-is for the member to quit the organization or for the customer to switch to the competing product, and the other-voice-is for members or customers to agitate and exert influence for change "from within."

The efficiency of the competitive mechanism, with its total reliance on exit, is questioned for certain important situations. As exit often undercuts voice while being unable to counteract decline, loyalty is seen in the function of retarding exit and of permitting voice to play its proper role.

The interplay of the three concepts turns out to illuminate a wide range of economic, social, and political phenomena. As the author states in the preface, "having found my own unifying way of looking at issues as diverse as competition and the two-party system, divorce and the American character, black power and the failure of 'unhappy' top officials to resign over Vietnam, I decided to let myself go a little."

About the Author

Albert O. Hirschmanis Professor of Social Science, Emeritus, at the <>Institute for Advanced Studyin Princeton, following a career of prestigious appointments, honors, and awards. Perhaps the most widely known and admired of his many books are Exit, Voice, and Loyalty(Harvard) and The Passions and the Interests(Princeton).

Table of Contents

  • 1. Introduction and Doctrinal Background
    • Enter “exit” and “voice”
    • Latitude for deterioration, and slack in economic thought
    • Exit and voice as impersonations of economics and politics
  • 2. Exit
    • How the exit option works
    • Competition as collusive behavior
  • 3. Voice
    • Voice as a residual of exit
    • Voice as an alternative to exit
  • 4. A Special Difficulty in Combining Exit and Voice
  • 5. How Monopoly Can Be Comforted by Competition
  • 6. On Spatial Duopoly and the Dynamics of Two-Party Systems
  • 7. A Theory of Loyalty
    • The activation of voice as a function of loyalty
    • Loyalist behavior as modified by severe initiation and high penalties for exit
    • Loyalty and the difficult exit from public goods (and evils)
  • 8. Exit and Voice in American Ideology and Practice
  • 9. The Elusive Optimal Mix of Exit and Voice
  • Appendixes
    • A. A simple diagrammatic representation of voice and exit
    • B. The choice between voice and exit
    • C. The reversal phenomenon
    • D. Consumer reactions to price rise and quality decline in the case of several connoisseur goods
    • E. The effects of severity of initiation on activism: design for an experiment (in collaboration with Philip G. Zimbardo and Mark Snyder)
  • Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674276604
Author:
Hirschman, Albert O.
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Location:
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Subject:
Management
Subject:
Organization
Subject:
Sociology - General
Subject:
Organizational Behavior
Subject:
Organizational sociology
Subject:
Loyalty
Subject:
Dissenters
Subject:
Management - General
Subject:
Economics - General
Subject:
Business Writing
Subject:
Business & Economics : General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series Volume:
82-58
Publication Date:
January 2006
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
None
Pages:
176
Dimensions:
8 x 6 in 7 oz

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Related Subjects


Business » General
Business » Management
Business » Writing
History and Social Science » Economics » General
History and Social Science » Sociology » General
Humanities » Philosophy » General

Exit, Voice, and Loyalty: Responses to Decline in Firms, Organizations, and States New Trade Paper
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$33.50 In Stock
Product details 176 pages Harvard University Press - English 9780674276604 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , An innovator in contemporary thought on economic and political development looks here at decline rather than growth. Albert O. Hirschman makes a basic distinction between alternative ways of reacting to deterioration in business firms and, in general, to dissatisfaction with organizations: one-exit-is for the member to quit the organization or for the customer to switch to the competing product, and the other-voice-is for members or customers to agitate and exert influence for change "from within."

The efficiency of the competitive mechanism, with its total reliance on exit, is questioned for certain important situations. As exit often undercuts voice while being unable to counteract decline, loyalty is seen in the function of retarding exit and of permitting voice to play its proper role.

The interplay of the three concepts turns out to illuminate a wide range of economic, social, and political phenomena. As the author states in the preface, "having found my own unifying way of looking at issues as diverse as competition and the two-party system, divorce and the American character, black power and the failure of 'unhappy' top officials to resign over Vietnam, I decided to let myself go a little."

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