My objective in this Article is to offer a description of property as an institution for organizing the use of resources in society. There are several strategies for deciding how valued things will be used, and by whom. “Might makes right” is one approach: we can let a strongman decide these questions. Bureaucratic governance is another: we can create a hierarchical organization and adopt rules and procedures for allocating resources. Group consensus is a third: questions about resource use can be resolved through meetings and discussion among those most closely involved. The claim advanced here is that property is a distinctive strategy for determining how resources will be used and by whom. It is worth trying to figure out what differentiates it from other strategies for performing this function.
Law | Property Law and Real Estate
Thomas W. Merrill,
The Property Strategy,
U. Pa. L. Rev.
Available at: https://scholarship.law.columbia.edu/faculty_scholarship/3266