Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 1995, VIII, 254 pp. 52 figs., 5 tabs.
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Two areas have fascinated me for a long time. One is the micro economic theory of consumer behavior, the other one the role of space in economic processes. Usually, the two don't go together very well. In more advanced versions of microeconomic consumer theory its economic actor may face uncertainty, have to allocate resources over time, or have to take into ac count the characteristics of products, but rarely deals with space. He/she inhabits a spaceless point economy. Regional Science, on the other hand, describes and analyzes the spatial structure and development of the econ omy, but either ignores individual decision making altogether or treats it in a rather simplistic way. In this book I try to bring together these two areas of interest of mine. I do this by use of the microeconomic concept of search and placing it in an explicit spatial context. The result, in my opinion, is a theoretical concept with fascinating implications, a broad set of potential implications, and numerous interesting research questions. After reading this book, where I layout the basic idea of spatial search, describe its elements, and discuss some of its implications, I hope the reader will share this opinion. There are still plenty of unanswered research questions in this part of economic theory. Hopefully, this book will stimulate more work along these lines.
1 Introduction.- 1.1 Some Important Relationships.- 1.2 Other Concepts of Search.- 1.3 Basic Elements of the Analysis.- 1.4 Aim and Structure of the Book.- 2 Economic Search Theory.- 2.1 Basic Search Models.- 2.1.1 The Sequential Search Strategy.- 2.1.2 The FSS-Search Strategy.- 2.1.3 Sequential and FSS-Strategy Compared.- 2.2 Extensions of the Basic Search Models.- 2.2.1 McKenna’s General Search Model: Discounting, Utility, and Search Intensity.- 2.2.2 Other Extensions of the Standard Economic Search Model.- 2.3 Search Based Markets.- 2.4 Summary.- 3 Prerequisites: Graphs, Routes, and Computational Complexity.- 3.1 Graphs.- 3.2 Routes.- 3.3 Computational Complexity.- 3.3.1 Types of Problems.- 3.3.2 The Traveling Salesman Problem.- 3.4 Summary.- 4 The General Spatial Search Problem.- 4.1 Definition of the Spatial Search Problem.- 4.1.1 Basic Assumptions.- 4.1.2 An Algorithm for Solving the General Spatial Search Problem.- 4.1.3 An Illustrating Example.- 4.2 The Complexity of the General Spatial Search Problem.- 4.3 Incomplete Routes.- 4.4 The Relevant Alternatives in a Spatial Search Problem.- 4.5 Parameter Changes in the Search Problem.- 4.5.1 Shifting and Scaling the Search Problem.- 4.5.2 Changes in the Structure of the Search Problem: Stopping Effects vs. Routing Effects.- 4.6 The Spatial Search Model and Economic Search Theory.- 4.7 Summary.- 5 Tractable Spatial Search Problems.- 5.1 Simplified Spatial Structures.- 5.1.1 Linear Space.- 5.1.2 Simplified Structures in Non-Linear Space.- 5.2 Heuristics and Approximations.- 5.2.1 General Aspects of Spatial Search Heuristics.- 5.2.2 Heuristics for the General Spatial Search Problem.- 5.3 Summary.- 6 The Implication of Spatial Search for Market Areas and Firm Location.- 6.1 Standard Location and Spatial Price Theory.- 6.2 Search Based Location and Spatial Price Structures.- 6.2.1 Consumer not Returning Home.- 6.2.2 Consumer Returning Home.- 6.3 Fette’s Law of Markets and Search.- 6.4 Summary.- 7 Spatial Search and Agglomeration.- 7.1 Hotelling’s Principle of Minimum Differentiation.- 7.2 Spatial Search and Agglomeration.- 7.3 Summary.- 8 Spatial Search and Spatial Interaction Models.- 8.1 The Gravity Model.- 8.2 The Intervening Opportunities Model.- 8.3 Discrete Choice Models.- 8.4 Search, Spatial Interaction, Discrete Choice.- 8.5 Notes on the Econometrics of Spatial Search.- 8.6 Summary.- 9 Conclusions and Future Research.- References.