A City Guide To Suzhou for short run: a period of time or decision-making period where at least one factor of production is fixed and cannot change. shutdown: a short-run decision made by suppliers, typically during periods of low demand, to produce zero units of output. social costs: the economic cost of producing or consuming a good that falls on society as a whole, and includes the actual cost of production or consumption as well as any negative effects from existing externalities that were created by that production or consumption. socialism: an economic system where the government has ownership over most productive (nonhuman) resources, and is responsible for the predominant amount of decision-making. sole proprietorship: a type of firm organization, where one individual becomes the owner of a firm. Like partnerships, sole proprietorships are characterized as having unlimited liability. specialization: the act of concentrating on the production of one specific good. A City Guide To Suzhou 2016.