The political economy of property law

Visiting scholar Dr. Livia Navone’s research focuses on the political economy of property law and on the impact of institutional changes on the development of property law, with special attention to the role of collective property rights for society.


Dr Navone’s work cuts across European law, law and economics, natural resources law and land use planning. Her PhD, The More the Merrier: Collective Property Rights in the Wine Market, combined legal analysis and economic principles to offer a theory of European law on regional marks.

Dr. Navone is based at the Centre for comparative and transnational law at the University of Turin, affiliated with the research program “Economic Analysis of Property Rights”. She has been assistant/visiting professor at University of Piemonte Orientale (Italy), the St. John International University in Vinovo (Italy), and Bar Ilan University (Israel).

Lunch seminar Monday 5 November at 12 to 2 p.m.

Dr. Navone will give a presentation on property rights to non-owners, labeled “political property rights”. This category of property rights consists of various powers in scarce resources recognized to individuals and groups who do not hold a direct property title over those resources. The content of these different “property rights” vary considerably and may include possession combined with building rights, grazing and farming rights, holdouts rights, transfer rights.
After an introduction of about 20 minutes, there will be a free discussion.

If you want lunch, please send a message to Ingunn Ikdahl before Wednesday 31 October.

Lecture Tuesday 6 November at 10 to 12 a.m.

Dr. Navone’s lecture focuses on takings theory and rights of compensation, on the basis of a study of the legal implications of the fast train project (widely known as the TGV project),  connecting Lyon to Budapest via Northern Italy.

Through an analysis of the opposition of various local groups to the project and the diverse motivations that stood behind it, she demonstrates that the legal grant of compensation in cases of taking may, not suffice to guarantee the execution of important social projects.

Powerful groups of non-owners, called “political holdouts”, can take advantage of their political clout to block projects. The case shows that political holdouts will arise for a variety of reasons, even when the project is for the benefit of the holdouts.

Specifically, municipalities may oppose even projects that benefit them simply to increase their share of the overall surplus generated by the project. The problem is significant and acute, and demonstrates the need for further development of takings theory.

The lecture is based on a recent publication in the European Journal of Law and Economics: Property versus political holdouts.

Published Oct. 4, 2012 3:00 PM - Last modified Feb. 6, 2015 10:26 AM