ⓘ Common ownership

Common ownership

ⓘ Common ownership

Common ownership refers to holding the assets of an organization, enterprise or community indivisibly rather than in the names of the individual members or groups of members as common property.

Forms of common ownership exist in every economic system. Common ownership of the means of production is a central goal of communist political movements as it is seen as a necessary democratic mechanism for the creation and continued function of a communist society. Advocates make a distinction between collective ownership and common property as the former refers to property owned jointly by agreement of a set of colleagues, such as producer cooperatives, whereas the latter refers to assets that are completely open for access, such as a public park freely available to everyone.


1. History

While virtually all societies have elements of common ownership, societies have existed where common ownership extended to essentially all possessions. Another term for this arrangement is a "gift economy" or communalism. Many nomadic societies effectively practiced common ownership of land.


1.1. History Christian societies

The first church in Jerusalem shared all their money and possessions Acts of the Apostles 2 and 4. Inspired by the Early Christians, many Christians have since tried to follow their example of community of goods and common ownership. Common ownership is practiced by some Christian groups such as the Hutterites for about 500 years, the Bruderhof for some 100 years and others. In those cases, property is generally owned by a charity set up for the purpose of maintaining the members of the religious groups.


2. Common ownership in capitalist economies

Common ownership is practised by large numbers of voluntary associations and non-profit organizations as well as implicitly by all public bodies. Most co-operatives have some element of common ownership, but some part of their capital may be individually owned.


3. Marxist theory

Many socialist movements advocate the common ownership of the means of production by all of society as an eventual goal to be achieved through the development of the productive forces, although many socialists classify socialism as public-ownership of the means of production, reserving common ownership for what Karl Marx termed "upper-stage communism". From a Marxist analysis, a society based on a superabundance of goods and common ownership of the means of production would be devoid of classes based on ownership of productive property.

Common ownership in a hypothetical communist society is distinguished from primitive forms of common property that have existed throughout history, such as Communalism and primitive communism, in that communist common ownership is the outcome of social and technological developments leading to the elimination of material scarcity in society.

From 1918 until 1995 the common ownership of the means of production, distribution and exchange was cited in Clause IV of its constitution as a goal of the British Labour Party and was quoted on the back of its membership cards. The clause read:

To secure for the workers by hand or by brain the full fruits of their industry and the most equitable distribution thereof that may be possible upon the basis of the common ownership of the means of production, distribution and exchange, and the best obtainable system of popular administration and control of each industry or service.


4. Criticism

Neoclassical economic theory analyzes common ownership using contract theory. According to the incomplete contracting approach pioneered by Oliver Hart and his co-authors, ownership matters because the owner of an asset has residual control rights. This means that the owner can decide what to do with the asset in every contingency not covered by a contract. In particular, an owner has stronger incentives to make relationship-specific investments than a non-owner, so ownership can ameliorate the so-called hold-up problem. As a result, ownership is a scarce resource that should not be wasted. In particular, a central result of the property rights approach says that joint ownership is suboptimal. If we start in a situation with joint ownership where each party has veto power over the use of the asset and move to a situation in which there is a single owner, the investment incentives of the new owner are improved while the investment incentives of the other parties remain the same. However, in the basic incomplete contracting framework the sub-optimality of joint ownership holds only if the investments are in human capital while joint ownership can be optimal if the investments are in physical capital. Recently, several authors have shown that joint ownership can actually be optimal even if investments are in human capital. In particular, joint ownership can be optimal if the parties are asymmetrically informed, if there is a long-term relationship between the parties, or if the parties have know-how that they may disclose.

  • Common law also known as judicial precedent or judge - made law is the body of law derived from judicial decisions of courts and similar tribunals. The
  • survivorship. In contrast, a tenancy in common does not include a right of survivorship. The type of co - ownership does not affect the right of co - owners
  • Media ownership in Canada is governed by the Canadian Radio - television and Telecommunications Commission CRTC with respect to audiovisual media and
  • Shareholder ownership value SOV is a financial theory that developed internationally after the subprime mortgage crisis. It started at the Wharton School
  • Transparency of media ownership refers to the public availability of accurate, comprehensive and up - to - date information about media ownership structures to make
  • Third - Party Ownership TPO in association football is the ownership of a player s economic rights by third - party sources. The third - party - which can be
  • boundaries and, of that, 400 acres 160 ha was common land, the rest being agricultural land in private ownership or already owned by the crown. Charles I paid
  • Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership JPFO is a 501 c 3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation of gun rights in the United
  • The home - ownership rate in the United States is percentage of homes that are owned by their occupants. In 2009, it remained similar to that in some other
  • portion of ownership in the corporation. Such distributions maintain their proportional ownership in the corporation. Common stock Common stock dividends

Users also searched:

common ownership socialism, example of common ownership, what does common ownership mean in business,