Gary D. Libecap

Professor Emeritus


Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, 1976

Areas of Expertise

  • Natural Resources
  • Property Rights and Regulation
  • Economics History


  • “Small Farms, Externalities, and the Dust Bowl of the 1930s,” Journal of Political Economy, 2004, with Zeynep Hansen.
  • “The Allocation of Property Rights to Land: U.S. Land Policy and Farm Failure in the Great Plains,” Explorations in Economic History, 2004, with Zeynep Hansen.
  • “Transactions Costs and Coalition Stability Under Majority Rule,” Economic Inquiry, with Ronald Johnson, 2003.
  • “The Economic Evolution of Petroleum Property Rights in the United States,” Journal of Legal Studies, 2003, with James Smith.
  • “The Contribution of Entrepreneurship Education: A Case Study,” International Journal of Entrepreneurship Education, 2003, with Alberta Charney.
  • “ 'Rain Follows the Plow' and Dryfarming Doctrine: The Climate Information Problem and Homestead Failure in the Upper Great Plains, 1890-1925,” Journal of Economic History, 2002, with Zeynep Hansen.
  • “Regulatory Remedies to the Common Pool: The Limits to Oil Field Unitization," Energy Journal, 2001 with James Smith.
  • “The Effect of Cost Heterogeneity in the Success and Failure of the New Deal's Agricultural and Industrial Programs,” Explorations in Economic History, 2000, with Barbara Alexander.
  • “Information Distortion and Competitive Remedies in Government Transfer Programs: The Case of Ethanol,” The Economics of Governance, 2001, with Ronald N. Johnson.
  • “Property Rights to Land and Land Reform: Legal Inconsistencies and the Sources of Violent Conflict in the Brazilian Amazon,” Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, 2000, with Lee Alston and Bernardo Mueller.
  • “The Self-Enforcing Provisions of Oil and Gas Unit Operating Agreements: Theory and Evidence,” Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, 1999, with James Smith.
  • “A Model of Rural Conflict: Violence and Land Reform Policy in Brazil,” Environment and Development Economics, 4 (1999): 135-60. Lee Alston, Gary Libecap and Bernardo Mueller.
  • “Unitization," The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics and the Law, Peter Newman, ed., 1998
  • “Common Property,” The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics and the Law, Peter Newman, ed., 1998
  • “Environmental Regulation and Federalism," Arizona Law Review, 1996.
  • “The Determinants and Impact of Property Rights: Land Titles on the Brazilian Frontier,” with Lee Alston and Robert Schneider, Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, 1996.
  • “Courts, A Protected Bureaucracy, and Reinventing Government,” with R.N. Johnson, Arizona Law Review, 1995.
  • “Property Rights and the Preconditions for Markets: The Case of the Amazon Frontier,” with Lee Alston and Robert Schneider, Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics,1995.
  • “The Failure of Government-Sponsored Cartelization and the Development of Federal Farm Policy,"with Elizabeth Hoffman, Economic Inquiry, 1995.
  • “Land, Property Rights, and Privitization in Brazil,” with Bernardo Mueller, Lee Alston, and Robert Schneider,Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance,Special issue, 1994.
  • “The Conditions for Successful Collective Action,” Journal of Theoretical Politics, 1994, pp. 569-598. Reprinted in Robert Keohane and Elinor Ostrom, eds., Local Commons and Global Interdependence, Sage Publications.
  • “Patronage to Merit and Control of the Federal Government Labor Force,” with R.N. Johnson, Explorations in Economic History, 1994.
  • “The Rise of the Chicago Packers and the Origins of Meat Inspection and Antitrust,” Economic Inquiry, April 1992. Selected Selected by the Editorial Board as the "Best Article for 1992”
  • “Bureaucratic Issues and Environmental Concerns: A Review of The History of Federal Land Ownership and Management," Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, 1992.
  • “Institution Choice and the Development of U.S. Agricultural Policies in the 1920's," with Elizabeth Hoffman, Journal of Economic History, June 1991.
  • “Public Sector Employee Voter Participation and Salaries,” with R.N. Johnson, Public Choice, January 1991.
  • “Comments on Elnor Ostrom's 'Microconstitutional Political Systems',” Rationality and Society, January,1990.