Introduction. Institutes and institutions are phenomena that invariably accompany the development of economic systems. Their existence is a consequence of the limited rationality of a person, who, a priori, does not have possibilities and time to fully substantiate possible strategies of behavior. The appearance of institutes (institutions) is due to the attempt to save efforts on the acquisition and processing of information. The world agro-food system is developed not only under the influence of a certain set of institutions or by the functioning of a number of institutes, but within the framework of their specific structured population, which is determined by the specificity of individual countries. Institutions and institutes form the institutional environment of economic systems, characterized by a certain institutional structure. The latter connects various elements and subsystems, determines the nature of their interaction, and thus lays the foundation for their concerted functioning within the world agro-food system.

Purpose. The purpose of the scientific article is to substantiate the institutional- integrative principles of research into the development of the world agro-food system.

Results. The prerequisites and factors of the origin and existence of institutes and institutions are determined. The sources of origin of the terms "institute" and "institution" are pointed out and their clear distinction is made in the works of Western scholars. The unreasonableness of the identification of the terms “institute” and “institution” in the sociological and economic tradition of Ukraine and other post-Soviet countries has been clarified. It is noted that in the works of national and other authors there was a real loss of such a specific concept as “institution”. It is proved that the reason for the reduction of the conceptual apparatus of institutionalism in the Russian language is the consolidation of the term “institute” (instead of “institution”) in the process of mistranslating T. Veblen's seminal work “The Theory of the Inactive Class”: in its subtitle it was precisely about the institutions (“An Economic Study of Institution”), not about the institutes as translated. It is emphasized that, without acquaintance with the work of the founder of neoinstitutionalism of D. North (which is published in the Ukrainian translation) “Institutions, institutional change and functioning of the economy”, most domestic authors copy the references to the Russian edition of this book. It is shown that the distortion of the methodological apparatus of research greatly simplifies the process of presenting their results, since all phenomena are simply united within a single concept of “institute” without a deep theoretical analysis of their essence. It is noted that the concept of the Institute is now excessively absolutized and used without reason.

Originality. The institutional-integrative principles of research into the development of the world agro-food system have been improved based on the disclosure of the components of the institutional environment of this system and its hierarchical structure, determination of the functional role of institutions and institutes. The three-level scheme of analysis of the interaction of institutions and institutes are used to determine the development of the agro-food system: institutions and institutes that determine the institutional environment; institutional agreements; organizations and other market actors. The reasons of institutional pitfalls have been identified. Theoretical analysis of the resource supply of economic activity is made, which is related to the positioning of the subjects of the agro-food market in the external environment and is manifested mainly at the informal level.

Conclusion. In terms of institutional-integrative analysis, the behavior of subjects within the institutional environment of the agro-food system is adaptive. They will dwell on some acceptable (satisfying) version of their behavior. The form of its implementation is joining the existing system of relations. Therefore, the economic entity will try to “fit in” this institutional environment, in particular, at its hierarchical level, which is represented by different structures of bilateral relations. This kind of entry is not always easy, since it requires considerable material and intellectual resources; these costs are called investments in relationships (transactional investments). Therefore, the subject's desire to maintain the status quo may outweigh the effort to generate revenue. Given the informational importance of modern communication tools, we have come to the conclusion that they destroy indirect, remote structures of social interaction that require institutionalization and formal expression. Nowadays, economic conditions and technologies do not automatically and unconditionally provide a definite financial result; individual and collective actions within the existing relationships, social relations, and competitive situation on the market determine what opportunity will be used.


institution, institute, institutional environment, institutional structure, instutionalization of economy, formal institutes, informal institutes, institutional agreements, institutional vacuum, institutional trap, base institutes, agri-food system, trans


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