By Kathleen A. Carroll (auth.)
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Additional info for Property Rights and Managerial Decisions in For-profit, Nonprofit, and Public Organizations: Comparative Theory and Policy
Williamson (1990, p. 179) notes that it is 'now generally agreed that the satisficing approach has not been broadly applicable,' which of course is true for models that are based in optimization techniques. That the controversy reflects a diSCiplinary attitude is captured by Douglas (1990), who recognizes Simon's point that bounded rational behavior is efficient because it conserves resources that are employed in the decision making process. She notes that '[w]hereas Simon treated [bounded rationality] as a good thing because it is a form of economizing in cognitive energy, Williamson ...
The literature on the theory of the firm has shown that organizations arise as a response to market failures. In this case, the assumptions of the competitive model do not hold. Market failures take a variety of forms. There may be economies of scale or scope in production Efficient Decisions in Organizations and Social Welfare 33 so that production efficiencies can only be captured through an organizational structure that replaces simple exchanges. There may be positive transactions costs so that efficiencies in contracting can be captured best through a specific organizational design.
Orientation refers to individuals' awareness of and adaptation to their environment. The economic model of efficient markets is based on multiple impersonal decisions. Societies and organizations are not autonomous, however. The individuals who interact in various relationships have personalities and individual preferences that affect the way those relationships work and, therefore, the outcomes of decisions made in the context of these relationships. Thus, orientation can affect the form of rules that are developed and the way that they are implemented, thus altering the level of efficiency (Zhou, 1997).