My work on this thesis has slowed down because I have picked up another project.
First, to report on this wealth-in-institutions thesis, I continue reading materials which might help by showing that someone has already done serious work on the questions I raise. I continue to update the bibliography. But I continue to find almost nothing of direct relevance. Perhaps this should encourage me since it might suggest that I am onto something novel. But it might also suggest that I am attempting something very difficult, or something for which data do not exist in readily usable form. This theses engages me in a struggle at the level of basic terms. I do not share a "language community" with others who perceive and mention the same issues.
Second, let me mention the project which I have picked up, which has taken most of my time during the last two months. It is a computer simulation, a multi-agent model, of primitive life. My little critters need both water and sugar to survive. A thin population of these critters lives on a plane where water and sugar sometimes appear at random locations. One critter can swap water for sugar with a second critter if both critters would gain, that is if one critter has a greater need for water and the second has a greater need for sugar. Probably I will start a second "blog" here on Blogger, to report on this second project of mine. Ultimately I hope my model will suggest an answer to the question asked by Ronald Coase: Why do people form firms?