Vie et mort des institutions marchandes
Life and death of mercantile institutions
The markets we trade in are not arid landscapes, where the interests of the calculating are coldly articulated. They are, to the contrary, saturated with landmarks and signposts - logos, trademarks, criticism, reputations, certifications, labels, titles, and statutes - which contribute to the definition of our choices and, of late, weigh on the issues of the day.
How do we comprehend the deterministic role the critic Robert Parker plays in the price fixing of Bordeaux wines? After all, there is no mechanism to coerce nor impose on the actors of the Bordeaux region to rely on his notes for fixing their prices, and yet none can ignore them. It's thus the power of the "Robert Parker" mercantile institution that must explain it.
If these institutions play a such a role in our economic lives, we must also take into account their origin and their transformation: for example, where does the Sentier, long associated with the confection industry, come from, having brutally become synonymous with the torment of the bourgeoning net-economy of the 1990's?
The origins and power of mercantile institutions are among the enigmas that this work attempts to explore across an original theoretical context as well as a series of studies on the wine market, biotechnology firms, and the convention ISO 26000.