The Power of Supply and Demand

Thinking Tools and Case Studies for Students and Professionals


Lawrence W.C. Lai and Ben T. Yu

ISBN : 978-962-209-569-4

Economics, Finance, Business, Management

December 2002

352 pages, 6″ x 9″

  • HK$190.00

In contrast to many economics texts, which are often abstract and mathematical, this book uses simple language and graphs to demonstrate the general applicability of basic economic concepts, informed by ideas of the transaction cost paradigm, to a wide range of social, physical and legal phenomena. The case studies and applications collected here should enable students and practitioners, especially those in the management of the built and natural environment, to appreciate the power of economic theory in expressing, interpreting, and reviewing policies and practices.

Lawrence W. C. Lai, with degrees in economics, law, town planning and surveying, is a professor in the Department of Real Estate and Construction, the University of Hong Kong. He specializes in the economic analysis and practice of town planning and environmentalism. Ben T. Yu is trained in both mathematics and economics. After graduating from the University of Washington he taught economics at the University of California at Los Angeles and the University of Hong Kong. He has just retired from being Professor of Economics at the California State University, Northridge.

“This is useful supplementary reading for students and professionals with little economic training. Unlike standard introductory texts, the book presents a more focused view on microeconomics and price theory.” —Professor Francis Ting-ming Lui, Department of Economics, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

“The book will be of great benefit to students on applied courses in many professions, for example surveying, building construction, town planning and land management. It is highly innovative, well conceived, efficiently and effectively written, and challenging.” —Professor Chris Webster, Department of City and Regional Planning, Cardiff University

“A well-written textbook. It presents the core ideas of price theory through simple models using real live examples. The emphasis on transactions costs, property rights, contractual nature of the firm, Coase’s approach to market failure, and economic analysis of law and legal institutions places the textbook firmly in the classical Chicago tradition.” —Professor Richard Yue-chim Wong, Faculty of Business and Economics, University of Hong Kong