Law and Political Economy: Missing Markets, Missing Law, and Missing Political Economy


This Article critiques the “Law and Political Economy” (LPE) framework. It aims to challenge the Law and Economics (L&E) approach. We argue that LPE lacks a coherent theoretical foundation and fails to engage with empirical evidence, rendering its critiques of markets, law, and political economy incomplete and unpersuasive. By contrast, L&E provides robust analytical tools and a well-developed understanding of legal and market dynamics, is grounded in empirical research, and has theoretical consistency. We illustrate these points through historical examples in the evolution of L&E and suggest ways LPE can evolve to offer a meaningful alternative. Rigorous intellectual competition will advance the understanding of law and its role on the economy.