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Williamson is very network-friendly. See Gerlach's  1992 book, Alliance capitalism: the social organization of Japanese business. There is a  "safeguard" logic of interlocking directorates and cross-share ownership that he supports/unpacks using SNA. Lincoln's work with Gerlach is also noteworthy in recognizing a role for transaction costs. 

My view of Williamson's main contributions:
Economizing Logic (as opposed to profit maximizing)

Organization/organizing costs not zero

Assumption of opportunistic behavior as a possibility that results in incuring costs to protect against

Treats bounded rationality as present in all transactions (very Simonian)

Discriminating alignment (of governance mode--org. choice--to safeguard)

Existence  of primarily discrete organization and organizing choices

Coase and North are both foundations for Williamson. In my view the difference is Williamson is one of the few really rigorous followers and serious builders-upon their work--he brought Coase and North forward in a way that explains why firms organize in certain ways. Williamson, unlike Coase and North, subsequently inspired hordes of scholars to empirically explore transaction cost logic in a wide variety of settings. 
Cheers.
-BH
 -----Contact-----------------------------------------
Bruce Heiman, Associate Professor
Program Chair, IBEC 2010 (Prague)
IBEC on the Web: http://online.sfsu.edu/~ibec 
International Business Dept. 
San Francisco State University
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----- Original Message ----
From: Don Steiny <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Mon, October 12, 2009 10:56:32 AM
Subject: WIlliamson/Coase

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I tend to think of Williamson in the same school of thinking about microeconomics as Coase, here is a reference to a paper on them by a well known sociological theorist.

Granovetter, Mark (1995). "Coase Revisited: Business Groups in the Modern Economy". /Industrial and Corporate Change/ 4(1): 93-130

-Don

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