WorldCat Identities

Hart, Oliver D.

Works: 167 works in 676 publications in 1 language and 3,258 library holdings
Genres: Contracts  Conference papers and proceedings  History 
Roles: Author
Classifications: HB1, 330
Publication Timeline
Most widely held works by Oliver D Hart
Default and renegotiation : a dynamic model of debt by Oliver D Hart( Book )

33 editions published between 1989 and 1997 in English and held by 165 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We analyze the role of debt in persuading an entrepreneur to pay out cash flows, rather than to divert them. In the first part of the paper we study the optimal debt contract -- specifically, the trade-off between the size of the loan and the repayment -- under the assumption that some debt contract is optimal. In the second part we consider a more general class of (non-debt) contracts, and derive sufficient conditions for debt to be optimal among these
Foundations of incomplete contracts by Oliver D Hart( Book )

20 editions published in 1998 in English and held by 148 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Abstract: In the last few years a new area has emerged in economic theory, which goes under the heading of However, almost since its inception, the theory has been under attack for its lack of rigorous foundations. In this paper, we evaluate some of the criticisms that have been made of the theory, in particular, those in Maskin and Tirole (1998a). In doing so, we develop a model that provides a rigorous foundation for the idea that contracts are incomplete
On the design of hierarchies : coordination versus specialization by Oliver D Hart( Book )

25 editions published between 1999 and 2000 in English and held by 146 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We develop a model of hierarchies based on the allocation of authority. A firm's owners have ultimate authority over a firm's decisions, but they have limited time or capacity to exercise this authority. Hence owners must delegate authority to subordinates. However, these subordinates also have limited time or capacity and so further delegation must occur. We analyze the optimal chain of command given that different agents have different tasks: some agents are engaged in coordination and others in specialization. Our theory throws light on the nature of hierarchy, the optimal degree of decentralization, and the boundaries of the firm
Contracts as reference points by Oliver D Hart( )

23 editions published between 2006 and 2008 in English and held by 141 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

In a recent paper, Hart and Moore (2008) introduce new behavioral assumptions that can explain long-term contracts and important aspects of the employment relation. However, so far there exists no direct evidence that supports these assumptions and, in particular, Hart and Moore's notion that contracts provide reference points. In this paper, we examine experimentally the behavioral forces stipulated in their theory. The evidence confirms the model's prediction that there is a tradeoff between rigidity and flexibility in a trading environment with incomplete contracts and ex ante uncertainty about the state of nature. Flexible contracts - which would dominate rigid contracts under standard assumptions - cause a significant amount of shading on ex post performance, while under rigid contracts, much less shading occurs. Thus, although rigid contracts rule out trading in some states of the world, parties frequently implement them. While our results are broadly consistent with established behavioral concepts, they cannot easily be explained by existing theories. The experiment appears to reveal a new behavioral force: ex ante competition legitimizes the terms of a contract, and aggrievement and shading occur mainly about outcomes within the contract
Cooperatives vs. outside ownership by Oliver D Hart( Book )

23 editions published between 1997 and 1998 in English and held by 140 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We are concerned with the design of a constitution for a firm -- an ex ante contract which assigns residual rights of control (and possibly residual income rights) without reference to the issue to be decided. We focus attention on two polar constitutions: nonprofit cooperatives and outside ownership. In the former, ownership is shared among a group of consumers on a one member, one vote basis. In the latter, all control rights and rights to residual income are allocated to an outsider. Ex post, agents are assumed to have asymmetric information, which rules out recontracting. We have two main results. First, in the case of perfect competition, an outside owner achieves the first-best; a cooperative typically does not because the rent from any cost advantage relative to the market is used to shield members from competitive pressure, and the median voter's preferences may not reflect average preferences. Second, in the case where the members of a cooperative have common preference orderings they unanimously vote for the first-best; an outside owner typically makes inefficient decisions, tailored to the marginal rather than to the average customer
A new bankruptcy procedure that uses multiple auctions by Oliver D Hart( Book )

20 editions published between 1996 and 1997 in English and held by 128 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We develop a new bankruptcy procedure that makes use of multiple auctions. The procedure" is designed to work even when capital markets do not function well (for example in developing" economies, or in economies in transition) -- although it can be used in all economies."
The proper scope of government : theory and an application to prisons by Oliver D Hart( Book )

19 editions published between 1995 and 1996 in English and held by 128 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

When should a government provide a service inhouse and when should it contract out provision? We develop a model in which the provider can invest in improving the quality of service or reducing cost. If contracts are incomplete, the private provider has a stronger incentive to engage in both quality improvement and cost reduction than a government employee. However, the private contractor's incentive to engage in cost reduction is typically too strong because he ignores the adverse effect on non-contractible quality. The model is applied to understanding the costs and benefits of prison privatization
Debt and seniority : an analysis of the role of hard claims in constraining management by Oliver D Hart( Book )

16 editions published between 1993 and 1995 in English and held by 109 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We argue that long-term debt has a role in controlling management's ability to finance future investments. A company with high (widely-held) debt will find it hard to raise capital, since new security holders will have low priority relative to existing creditors. Conversely for a company with low debt. We show there is an optimal debt-equity ratio and mix of senior and junior debt if management undertakes unprofitable as well as profitable investments. We derive conditions under which equity and a single class of senior long-term debt work as well as more complex contracts for controlling investment behavior
Financial contracting by Oliver D Hart( Book )

17 editions published in 2001 in English and held by 106 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper discusses how economists' views of firms' financial structure decisions have evolved from treating firms' profitability as given; to acknowledging that managerial actions affect profitability; to recognizing that firm value depends on the allocation of decision or control rights. The paper argues that the decision or control rights approach is useful, even though it is at an early stage of development, and that the approach has some empirical content: it can throw light on the structure of venture capital contracts and the reasons for the diversity of claims
Different approaches to bankruptcy by Oliver D Hart( Book )

17 editions published in 2000 in English and held by 104 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Abstract: In the last fifteen years or so, lawyers working in law and economics and economists with an interest in legal matters have turned their attention to the topic of bankruptcy. A large amount of work has resulted, both theoretical and empirical, some of which has been concerned with the functioning of existing bankruptcy procedures and some with bankruptcy reform. Although researchers in this area have expressed different views, I believe that one can identify a consensus on certain issues, e.g., the goals of bankruptcy and some of the characteristics of an efficient bankruptcy procedure. This paper summarizes this consensus. One point I will stress is that it is unlikely that one size fits all.' That is, although some bankruptcy procedures can probably be rejected as being manifestly bad, there is a class of procedures that satisfy the main criteria of efficiency. Which procedure a country chooses or should choose may then depend on other factors, e.g., the country's institutional structure and legal tradition. One can also imagine a country choosing a menu of procedures and allowing firms to select among them
The Economics of bankruptcy reform by Philippe Aghion( Book )

17 editions published in 1992 in English and held by 101 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We propose a new bankruptcy procedure. Initially, a firm's debts are cancelled, and cash and non-cash bids are solicited for the 'new" (all-equity) firm. Former claimants are given shares, or options to buy shares, in the new firm on the basis of absolute priority. Options are exercised once the bids are in. Finally, a shareholder vote is taken to select one of the bids. In essence, our procedure is a variant on the U.S. Chapter 7, in which non-cash bids are possible; this allows for reorganization. We believe our scheme is superior to Chapter 11 since it is simpler, quicker, market-based, avoids conflicts, and places appropriate discipline on management
Agreeing now to agree later : contracts that rule out but do not rule in by Oliver D Hart( Book )

17 editions published in 2004 in English and held by 99 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We view a contract as a list of outcomes. Ex ante, the parties commit not to consider outcomes not on the list, i.e., these are ruled out'. Ex post, they freely bargain over outcomes on the list, i.e., the contract specifies no mechanism to structure their choice; in this sense outcomes on the list are not ruled in'. A loose' contract (long list) maximizes flexibility but may interfere with ex ante investment incentives. When these incentives are important enough, the parties may write a tight' contract (short list), even though this leads to ex post inefficiency
Takeover bids vs. proxy fights in contests for corporate control by Lucian A Bebchuk( Book )

15 editions published between 2001 and 2002 in English and held by 98 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This paper evaluates the primary mechanisms for changing management or obtaining control in publicly traded corporations with dispersed ownership. Specifically, we analyze and compare three mechanisms: (1) proxy fights (voting only); (2) takeover bids (buying shares only); and (3) a combination of proxy fights and takeover bids in which shareholders vote on acquisition offers. We first show how proxy fights unaccompanied by an acquisition offer suffer from substantial shortcomings that limit the use of such contests in practice. We then argue that combining voting with acquisition offers is superior not only to proxy fights alone but also to takeover bids alone. Finally, we show that, when acquisition offers are in the form of cash or the acquirer's existing securities, voting shareholders can infer from the pre-vote market trading which outcome would be best in light of all the available public information. Our analysis has implications for the ongoing debates in the US over poison pills and in Europe over the new EEC directive on takeovers
Norms and the theory of the firm by Oliver D Hart( Book )

8 editions published in 2001 in English and held by 85 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Abstract: This paper discusses some of the attempts economists have made in the last ten years or so to integrate norms into the theory of the firm. The paper argues that (a) although norms are undoubtedly very important both inside and between firms, incorporating them into the theory has been very difficult and is likely to continue to be so in the near future; (b) so far norms have not added a great deal to our understanding of such issues as the determinants of firm boundaries (the 'make-or-buy' decision) that is, at this point a norm-free theory of the firm and a norm-rich theory of the firm don't seem to have very different predictions
Firms, contracts, and financial structure by Oliver Hart( )

3 editions published between 1995 and 2009 in English and held by 81 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

This book provides a framework for thinking about economic relationships and institutions such as firms. The basic argument is that in a world of incomplete contracts, institutional arrangements are designed to allocate power among agents
A theory of debt based on the inalienability of human capital by Oliver D Hart( Book )

17 editions published between 1991 and 1995 in English and held by 77 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Consider an entrepreneur who needs to raise funds from an investor, but cannot commit not to withdraw his human capital from the project. The possibility of a default or quit puts an upper bound on the total future indebtedness from the entrepreneur to the investor at any date. We characterize the optimal repayment path and show how it is affected both by the maturity structure of the project return stream and by the durability and specificity of project assets. Our results are consistent with the conventional wisdom about what determines the maturity structure of (long-term) debt contracts
Inefficient provision of liquidity by Oliver D Hart( )

11 editions published in 2011 in English and held by 71 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We study an economy where the lack of a simultaneous double coincidence of wants creates the need for a relatively safe asset (money). We show that, even in the absence of asymmetric information or an agency problem, the private provision of liquidity is inefficient. The reason is that liquidity affects prices and the welfare of others, and creators do not internalize this. This distortion is present even if we introduce lending and government money. To eliminate the inefficiency the government must restrict the creation of liquidity by the private sector
A theory of corporate financial structure based on the seniority of claims by Oliver D Hart( )

14 editions published in 1990 in English and Undetermined and held by 70 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Abstract: to existing senior creditors. Conversely for a company with lew debt. We
Hold-up, asset ownership, and reference points by Oliver D Hart( )

9 editions published in 2007 in English and held by 70 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

We study two parties who desire a smooth trading relationship under conditions of value and cost uncertainty. A rigid contract fixing price works well in normal times since there is nothing to argue about. However, when value or cost is exceptional, one party will hold up the other, damaging the relationship and causing deadweight losses as parties withhold cooperation. We show that a judicious allocation of asset ownership can help by reducing the incentives to engage in hold up. In contrast to the literature, the driving force in our model is payoff uncertainty rather than noncontractible investments
One share/one vote and the market for corporate control by Sanford J Grossman( )

17 editions published between 1987 and 1988 in English and Undetermined and held by 69 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

A corporation's securities provide the holder with particular claims on the firm's income stream and particular voting rights. These securities can be designed in various ways: one share of a particular class may have a claim to votes which is disproportionately larger or smaller than its claim to income. In this paper we analyze some of the forces which make it desirable to set up the corporation so that all securities have the same proportion of votes as their claim to income ("one share/one vote"). We show that security structure influences both the conditions under which a control change takes place and the terms on which it occurs. First, the allocation of voting rights to securities determines which securities a party must acquire in order to win control. Secondly, the assignment of income claims to the same securities determines the cost of acquiring these voting rights. We will show that it is in shareholders' interest to set the cost of acquiring control to be as large as possible, consistent with a control change occurring whenever this increases shareholder wealth. Under certain assumptions, one share/one vote best achieves this goal. We distinguish between two classes of benefits from control: private benefits and security benefits. The private benefits of control refer to benefits the current management or the acquirer obtain for themselves, but which the target security holders do not obtain. The security benefits refer to the total market value of the corporation's securities. The assignment of income claims to voting rights determines the extent 'to which an acquirer must face competition from parties who value the firm for its security benefits rather than its private benefits
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Audience level: 0.71 (from 0.66 for Firms, con ... to 0.77 for Existence ...)

Firms, contracts, and financial structure
Alternative Names
D'Arcy Hart, Oliver Simon‏

D'Arcy Hart, Oliver Simon 1948-

Hart, O.

Hart, O. D.

Hart, O. D. 1948-

Hart, Oliver.

Hart, Oliver 1948-

Hart, Oliver D.

Hart, Oliver S.

Hart, Oliver S. 1948-

Hart, Oliver Simon D'Arcy.

Hart, Oliver Simon D'Arcy 1948-

Oliver Hart Amerikaans econoom

Oliver Hart amerikansk ekonom

Oliver Hart amerikansk økonom

Oliver Hart British economist

Oliver Hart brittisk–amerikansk ekonom

Oliver Hart brytyjski ekonomista, noblista

Oliver Hart economist britanic

Oliver Hart economista britànic

Oliver Hart economista británico

Oliver Hart économiste britannique

Oliver Hart US-amerikanischer Ökonom

Oliver Simon D’Arcy Hart

Oliver Simon Hart

Oliverius Hart

Оливер Харт

Оливър Харт

Олівер Гарт

Олівер Харт

Харт, Оливер

Օլիվեր Հարթ

אוליבר הארט כלכלן בריטי

الیور هارت اقتصاددان آمریکایی

أوليفر هارت عالم اقتصاد بريطاني

اولیور هارت

اولیور ہارٹ

অলিভার হার্ট ব্রিটিশ অর্থনীতিবিদ

অলিভাৰ হাৰ্ট

ਓਲੀਵਰ ਹਾਰਟ

அலிவர் ஹார்ட்

ഒലിവർ ഹാർട്ട്

올리버 하트

하트, 올리버 1948-


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English (344)