Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Tony Lawson
Title: Mathematical Modelling and Ideology in the Economics Academy: competing explanations of the failings of the modern discipline?
Abstract: The widespread and long-lived failings of academic economics are due to an over-reliance on largely inappropriate mathematical methods of analysis. This is an assessment I have long maintained. Many heterodox economists, however, appear to hold instead that the central problem is a form of political-economic ideology. Specifically, it is widely contended in heterodox circles that the discipline goes astray just because so many economists are committed to a portrayal of the market economy as a smoothly or efficiently functioning system or some such, a portrayal that, whether sincerely held or otherwise, is inconsistent with the workings of social reality. Here I critically examine the contention that a form of political-economic ideology of this sort is the primary problem and assess its explanatory power. I conclude that the contention does not fare very well. I do not, though, deny that ideology of some sort has a major impact on the output of the modern economics academy. However it is of a different nature to the form typically discussed, and works in somewhat indirect and complex ways. Having raised the question of the impact of ideology I take the opportunity to explore its play in the economics academy more generally.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1
Volume: 1
Issue: 1
Year: 2012
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/mathematical-modelling-and-ideology-in-the-economics-academy-competing-explanations-of-the-failings-of-the-modern-discipline/
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Donald Gillies
Author-Email: donald.gillies@ucl.ac.uk
Author-Workplace-Name: University College London
Title: Economics and Research Assessment Systems
Abstract: This paper seeks to analyse the effects on Economics of Research Assessment Systems, such as the Research Assessment Exercise (or RAE) which was carried out in the UK between 1986 and 2008. The paper begins by pointing out that, in the 2008 RAE, economics turned out to be the research area which was accorded the highest valuation of any subject in the UK, even though economists were then under attack for failing to predict the global financial crash which had occurred a few months earlier. One aim of the paper is to explain this economics anomaly in research assessment. The paper goes on to point out a key difference between economics and the natural sciences. Most areas of the natural sciences are dominated for most of the time by a single, generally accepted, paradigm, whereas there are always in economics different schools of thought which have different and highly conflicting paradigms. Given this situation, it is argued that the effect of research assessment systems in economics is to strengthen the majority school in the subject (whatever that is), and weaken the minority schools. This conclusion is supported by empirical data collected by Frederic Lee for the UK. It is then shown that the greater the dominance of the majority school, the higher the overall valuation of the subject is likely to be, and this is used to explain the anomaly noted earlier. It is argued that research in economics flourishes better in a situation in which there are a number of different schools treated equally, than in one in which a single school dominates. The conclusion is that research assessment systems have a negative effect on research in economics and give misleading results. Instead of such systems, an attempt should be made to encourage pluralism in the subject.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 2
Volume: 1
Issue: 1
Year: 2012
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/economics-and-research-assessment-systems/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/ETGillies_1_1.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Richard van den Berg
Title: Richard Cantillon's Early Monetary Views?
Abstract: The monetary theories in Philip Cantillon's The Analysis of Trade (1759) differ in important respects from those found in Richard Cantillon's much more famous Essai sur la nature de Commerce en général (1759). Contrary to the received opinion that the Analysis was a poor translation of the Essai, it is argued in this paper that many of these differences are due to the fact that Philip based his book on an earlier draft of his cousin's great work. Comparisons between the two texts allow us to assess, for the first time, how Richard Cantillon's developed his ideas on the quantity theory of money, the price-specie-flow mechanism and the determination of the interest rate.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 3
Volume: 1
Issue: 1
Year: 2012
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/richard-cantillons-early-monetary-views/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/ETVandenBerg_1_1.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:1:y:2012:i:1:p:3

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Sheila C Dow
Title: Different Approaches to the Financial Crisis
Abstract: The economic crisis has exposed shortcomings in standard economic theory and provided an impetus for new economic thinking. But the theoretical debate in the wake of the crisis has been unduly constrained by the terms of the mainstream approach to economic theory. Like any approach, it is characterised by a way of framing reality, giving meaning to terms and setting criteria for good argument. It also determines how any economic theory is understood, whether from the history of economic thought or from the contemporary literature. But there are other approaches to economics which would open up the field to a much wider range of possibilities for new economic thinking. Addressing the challenge that any reader bases her understanding on her own approach, the purpose of this paper is to attempt to explain what it means to consider different approaches and why it matters for policy. This is done by discussing two features of the financial crisis which pose particular problems for economic theory. These are the role of changing market sentiment in driving asset prices on the one hand and the breakdown of trust relationships in banking on the other (the moral hazard issue). We will see how these are addressed by mainstream theory and by alternative approaches. First, market sentiment is discussed within the mainstream rational-optimising framework, where risk is quantifiable, and compared with the Keynesian approach based on the general uncertainty of knowledge, where reason, evidence and sentiment are integrated. The moral hazard issue is then discussed in its mainstream form in terms of rational opportunism and in its institutionalist form in terms of the foundation of social relations (including relations between institutions) in trust. It is shown that different ways of approaching theorising in each case imply different policy measures. It is argued further that an exclusively deductive mathematical approach to analysis of market sentiment and trust is unduly limiting and that a more pluralist approach would more fully address the issues.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 4
Volume: 1
Issue: 1
Year: 2012
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/different-approaches-to-the-financial-crisis/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/ETDow_1_1.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Geoffrey M Hodgson
Author-Email: g.m.hodgson@herts.ac.uk
Author-Workplace-Name: Loughborough University London
Title: On the Limits of Rational Choice Theory
Abstract: The value of rational choice theory for the social sciences has long been contested. It is argued here that, in the debate over its role, it is necessary to distinguish between claims that people maximise manifest payoffs, and claims that people maximise their utility. The former version has been falsified. The latter is unfalsifiable, because utility cannot be observed. In principle, utility maximisation can be adapted to fit any form of behaviour, including the behaviour of non-human organisms. Allegedly 'inconsistent' behaviour is also impossible to establish without qualification. This utility-maximising version of rational choice theory has the character of a universal 'explanation' that can be made to 'fit' any set of events. This is a sign of weakness rather than strength. In its excessive quest for generality, utility-maximising rational choice theory fails to focus on the historically and geographically specific features of socio-economic systems. As long as such theory is confined to ahistorical generalities, then it will remain highly limited in dealing with the real world. Instead we have to consider the real social and psychological determinants of human behaviour.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 5
Volume: 1
Issue: 1
Year: 2012
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/on-the-limits-of-rational-choice-theory/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/ETHodgson_1_1.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Irene van Staveren
Title: An Evolutionary Efficiency Alternative to the Notion of Pareto Efficiency
Abstract: The paper argues that the notion of Pareto efficiency builds on two normative assumptions: the more general consequentialist norm of any efficiency criterion, and the strong no-harm principle of the prohibition of any redistribution during the economic process that hurts at least one person. These normative concerns lead to a constrained and static notion of efficiency in mainstream economics, ignoring dynamic efficiency gains from more equal allocations of resources. The paper argues that a weak no-harm principle instead provides an endogenous efficiency criterion, which shifts attention away from equilibrium analysis in hypothetically perfect markets towards an evolutionary analysis of efficiency in real-world, non-equilibrium markets. Moreover, such an evolutionary notion of efficiency would be less normative than the Paretian concept.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 6
Volume: 1
Issue: 1
Year: 2012
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/an-evolutionary-efficiency-alternative-to-the-notion-of-pareto-efficiency/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/ETVanStaveren_1_1.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:1:y:2012:i:1:p:6

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Avner Offer
Title: Self-interest, Sympathy and the Invisible Hand : From Adam Smith to Market Liberalism
Abstract: Adam Smith rejected Mandeville's invisible-hand doctrine of 'private vices, publick benefits'. In The Theory of Moral Sentiments his model of the 'impartial spectator' is driven not by sympathy for other people, but by their approbation. The innate capacity for sympathy makes approbation credible. Approbation needs to be authenticated, and in Smith's model authentication relies on innate virtue, which is not realistic. An alternative model of 'regard' makes use of signalling and is more pragmatic. Modern versions of the invisible hand in rational choice theory and neo- liberalism are shown to be radical departures from the ethical legacy of Enlightenment and utilitarian economics, and are not consistent with Adam Smith's own position.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1
Volume: 1
Issue: 2
Year: 2012
Month: December
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/self-interest-sympathy-and-the-invisible-hand/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-1-2-Offer.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Nuno Ornelas Martins
Title: Mathematics, Science and the Cambridge Tradition
Abstract: In this paper the use of mathematics in economics will be discussed, by comparing two approaches to mathematics, a Cartesian approach, and a Newtonian approach. I will argue that while mainstream economics is underpinned by a Cartesian approach which led to a divorce between mathematics and reality, the contributions of key authors of the Cambridge tradition, like Marshall, Keynes and Sraffa, are characterised by a Newtonian approach to mathematics, where mathematics is aimed at a study of reality. Marshall was influenced by the Newtonian approach that still characterised many aspects of the Cambridge Mathematical Tripos, where the emphasis was on geometrical and mechanical examples rather than on symbolic (Cartesian) mathematics. Keynes, who criticised (Cartesian) symbolic mathematics, was indeed an admirer of Newton and of his method. Sraffa's mathematical constructions are also in line with the Newtonian approach where arithmetic and geometry were strictly separated, since Sraffa's mathematical constructions typically use arithmetic without engaging in the mixture between geometry and arithmetic that occurs in the Cartesian approach. View the Open Peer Discussion of this paper »
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 2
Volume: 1
Issue: 2
Year: 2012
Month: December
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/mathematics-science-and-the-cambridge-tradition/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-1-2-Martins.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Manuel Wörsdörfer
Author-Email: woersdoerfer@wiwi.uni-frankfurt.de
Author-Workplace-Name: Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany
Title: Walter Eucken on Patent Laws: Are Patents Just ‘Nonsense upon Stilts’?
Abstract: As recent newspaper headlines show the topic of patents/patent laws is still heavily disputed. In this paper I will approach this topic from a theoretical-historical and history of economic thought-perspective. In this regard I will link the patent controversy of the nineteenth century with Walter Eucken's Ordoliberalism – a German version of neoliberalism. My paper is structured as follows: The second chapter provides the reader with a historical introduction. At the heart of this paragraph are the controversy and discourse on patent laws in nineteenth century Europe as well as the pro and contra arguments presented by the anti-patent/free-trade movement respectively by the advocates of patent protection. The focus of my paper is on the struggle for the protection of inventions and innovations in nineteenth century Germany, since Walter Eucken, main representative of the Freiburg School of Law and Economics, picks up the counter-arguments presented in the national debate and in particular by the Kongress deutscher Volkswirthe. The third chapter deals intensively with the question whether patent laws are just 'nonsense upon stilts' from an ordoliberal perspective. Here, Eucken's arguments against the current patent system are elaborated in great detail. The paper ends with a summary of my main findings. Read the Open Peer Discussion on this paper »
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 3
Volume: 1
Issue: 2
Year: 2012
Month: December
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/walter-eucken-on-patent-laws-are-patents-just-nonsense-upon-stilts/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-1-2-Worsdorfer.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:1:y:2012:i:2:p:3

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Jamie Morgan
Title: Forecasting, Prediction and Precision: A Commentary
Abstract: Forecasting involves an underlying conceptualization of probability. It is this that gives sense to the notion of precision in number that makes us think of economic forecasting as more than simply complicated guesswork. We think of it as well-founded statement, a science and not an art of numbers. However, this understanding is at odds with the nature of social reality and the attributes of the forecaster. We should think differently about how we both anticipate and make the future and what this means. Foresight is perhaps a more appropriate term. This paper addresses two issues that rarely receive attention in the field of economics. First, why is there a continued high demand for economic forecasts despite their lack of success in anticipating significant turning points in any given system? Second, what are forecasts actually assuming about the nature of a system and the future state of the world? In the paper I approach these issues indirectly. My intention is to highlight their significance by setting out a series of arguments that encapsulate the characteristics of a forecaster required to match a common understanding of what forecasting is intended to do. The structure of this paper is unusual for a contribution in the field of economics. It follows a format more commonly used in analytical philosophy when the author wants to focus on a problem and where the intention is to provoke further questioning, rather than supply ready answers. As such, it should not be read as a comprehensive account of all possible approaches to methods or philosophies of forecasting and attendant issues of probability. Three points are worth stating at the outset as a guide to what follows:
  1. Forecasting tends to forget that it is conjecture and what that really means. Its scientism overburdens how it is articulated and how it is perceived.
  2. We tend to think of forecasting as degrees of precision in prediction and of successful prediction as successful description of phenomena at some future point.
  3. There is, as the following discussion demonstrates, something basically inconsistent within the implications of this minimalism.
Since the greater part of the credibility of, and authority of, economics resides in its claims to effective forecasting these points are highly relevant to the state of the discipline. Read the Open Peer Discussion on this paper »
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 4
Volume: 1
Issue: 2
Year: 2012
Month: December
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/forecasting-prediction-and-precision-a-commentary/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-1-2-Morgan.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Karey Harrison
Title: Ontological Commitments of Ethics and Economics
Abstract: This paper analyses the cognitive image schemas structuring the ontological commitments of dominant conceptions of ethics and economics to show that the content of economics is implicated in conceptions of ethics, and that these conceptions cannot be separated from questions of research and professional ethics. This analysis of the metaphoric structuring of the ontological commitments of ethics and economics is based on an extension of Kuhn's construct sense of 'paradigm' as concrete analogy; and on techniques of metaphoric analysis developed in cognitive linguistics. Analysis of the iconic and schematic representations of the concrete analogies and idealised cognitive models structuring economic and ethical theories expose both shared and conflicting ontological commitments. Read the Open Peer Discussion on this paper »
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1
Volume: 2
Issue: 1
Year: 2013
Month: April
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/ontological-commitments-of-ethics-and-economics/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-2-1-Harrison.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:2:y:2013:i:1:p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Sheila C Dow
Title: Codes of Ethics for Economists: A Pluralist View
Abstract:
Within the discussion of ethics and economics some have considered designing a code of ethics for economists. But the idea of such a code is potentially problematic from a pluralist standpoint. Some possibilities are discussed here to show that any code concerning the behaviour of economists presumes a particular view of human nature and thus of professionalism. Further, issues of socio-economic power in the profession pose problems for the interpretation and implementation of some possible principles, notably those referring to standards of competence and truth-seeking. It is therefore concluded that any code of ethics should take the form of general guidelines, with primacy given to the ethics of pluralism: tolerance, even-handedness and open-mindedness, on which the interpretation of all other ethical considerations rests. Read the Open Peer Discussion on this paper » Read the discussion of this paper on the WEA's Ethics conference »

Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 2
Volume: 2
Issue: 1
Year: 2013
Month: April
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/codes-of-ethics-for-economists-a-pluralist-view/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-2-1-Dow.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Stuart Birks
Title: No Ethical Issues in Economics?
Abstract: For much economics research, ethics committee approval is not required. This is seen by some as indicating that there are no ethical issues in economics research. However, ethical research requires more than simply meeting regulatory requirements. If economics research has an impact on perceptions and resulting decisions, then there may be concerns about the nature of the research and its impact. There are a number of arguments that could be raised as to why economics does not describe the real world. What we see is shaped by how we see, so it is important to consider context. This paper considers the simplification that is an inevitable aspect of research. Implications for economic approaches are described, recognising that criticisms can apply to heterodox as well as mainstream approaches. Subjectivity is then discussed, questioning the traditional positive-normative distinction. An additional section relates to the application of economics. It focuses on the significance of rhetoric and the differing roles played by economists, each of which may have their own obligations and expectations. A theme throughout the paper is that of groups and group membership shaping perceptions and behaviour. The paper concludes that there are ethical issues in relation to both how and why economists undertake their work. Read the Open Peer Discussion on this paper » Read the discussion of this paper on the WEA's Ethics conference »
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 3
Volume: 2
Issue: 1
Year: 2013
Month: April
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/no-ethical-issues-in-economics/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-2-1-Birks.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:2:y:2013:i:1:p:3

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: George DeMartino
Title: Professional Economic Ethics: Why Heterodox Economists Should Care
Abstract:
In presenting the case for professional economic ethics over the past two years, since the publication of The Economist's Oath, I've encountered more scepticism among heterodox economists on the left than from those on the right. Left-leaning economists argue inter aliathat the project to establish a field of professional economic ethics is naïve, since economists are hardly to be dissuaded from doing wrong by the existence of a code of conduct; off target, since professional ethics doesn't address the main failures of economics and economists; and as a consequence of all that, that professional economic ethics is wrong-headed, at least for heterodox economists, since it deflects our attention away from the real problems in our profession. The left's scepticism regarding professional economic ethics, while not lacking merit, is mistaken in central respects. Not least, heterodox economists hold too narrow a view of the scope of professional economic ethics; and they tend to conflate the field with a code of conduct. Once we correct these errors, we come to see that heterodox economists should be at the forefront of the push for professional ethics in economics. The paper concludes by examining what professional economic ethics might imply for economic pedagogy. Read the Open Peer Discussion on this paper » Read the discussion on this paper on the WEA's Ethics conference »

Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 4
Volume: 2
Issue: 1
Year: 2013
Month: April
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/professional-economic-ethics-why-heterodox-economists-should-care/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-2-1-DeMartino.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Riccardo Baldissone
Title: And the Real Butchers, Brewers and Bakers? Towards the Integration of Ethics and Economics
Abstract: The difficult dialogue between human rights and business shows that neither the adoption of codes of conduct nor the enforcement of legal norms would overcome the supposed incompatibility of ethics and economics. Such a general supposition is the effect of a narrow understanding of economic activities, which in turn is the result of both neoliberal ideology and the traditional externalising approach of economics. I stress the necessity of the integration of ethics and economics, which would require not only the broadening of the economic horizon, but also the redefinition of the status of economic theories. I propose to conceive of this redefinition as a shift of the theoretical allegiance of economic conceptualisations, from the supposedly descriptive natural and social sciences to the discourse of politics.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 5
Volume: 2
Issue: 1
Year: 2013
Month: April
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/and-the-real-butchers-brewers-and-bakers-towards-the-integration-of-ethics-and-economics/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-2-1-Baldissone.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:2:y:2013:i:1:p:5

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: David Cassass
Title: Adam Smith's Republican Moment: Lessons for Today's Emancipatory Thought
Abstract: This paper places Adam Smith within the long republican tradition, and offers an emancipatory reflection on the possible space of republican freedom within societies that harbour certain degrees of market activity. In doing so, it seeks to offer some criteria on the kind of political-institutional action that can be taken in modern societies in order to constitute markets that respect, and even promote, republican freedom. The paper is divided into four sections. Section 1 shows why Adam Smith's ethical-political analysis, which was very influential in the shaping of classical political economy, can be presented as part of the broad republican tradition. Section 2 reflects on the possibilities for a realisation of republican freedom within markets. What I call 'commercial republicanism' is here analysed as a project for modern societies. Section 3 assesses the difficulties for commercial republicanism to unfold within capitalist societies, the structural features of which prevent individuals and groups from enjoying the kind of undominated social relations the republican tradition has always pleaded for. Finally, section 4 draws some conclusions on the epistemic and political meanings of commercial republicanism as an emancipatory project for contemporary societies.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1
Volume: 2
Issue: 2
Year: 2013
Month: October
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/adam-smiths-republican-moment-lessons-for-todays-emancipatory-thought/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-2-2-Casassas.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Leonardo Ivarola
Author-Name: Gustavo Marqués
Author-Name: Diego Weisman
Title: Expectations-based Processes – An Interventionist Account of Economic Practice: Putting the Direct Practice of Economics on the Agenda of Philosophy of Economics
Abstract: The paper starts by distinguishing between two kinds of economic practice: theoretical economic practice (TEP) (model and theory building) and direct economic practice (DEP) (the practical operation upon real economies). Most of the epistemological and philosophical considerations have been directed to the first type of practice, one of whose main goals is the discovery of particular sorts of economic laws, mechanisms and other regularities which throw light on relevant economic patterns. We do not deny that in some restricted domains these kinds of regularities may be found. Rather, we claim that the realm of economics is best understood as consisting of processes whose regular structure (if they have one at all) is not guaranteed beforehand but may be crucially influenced and successfully enforced by what we call DEP. We claim that (a) some economic processes are a particular type of social process that will be referred to as Expectations-Based Processes (EBP). Characteristically, an EBP shows a connection between the information that individuals receive from the relevant economic context, the expectations they form, and the actions they perform; (b) in those cases in which EBP exhibit a regular behaviour, they depend on agents' expectations and, crucially, we argue, on interventions upon them. Authorities as well as other economic actors may intervene to change agents' expectations (and therefore, their decisions), contributing to shape EBP and helping to produce the patterns that lead to some targeted economic phenomena. These features of EBP show that they are not shielded from external influences and they do not run autonomously once triggered. Therefore they cannot be conceived as mechanisms or as economic machines. Rather they are open-ended processes that require continuous prodding on the part of policy makers to keep them running in the intended way.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 20
Volume: 2
Issue: 2
Year: 2013
Month: October
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/expectations-based-processes-an-interventionist-account-of-economic-practice-putting-the-direct-practice-of-economics-on-the-agenda-of-philosophy-of-economics/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-2-2-Ivarola-et-al.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:2:y:2013:i:2:p:20

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Victoria Chick
Title: Economics and the Good Life: Keynes and Schumacher
Abstract: It is, I think, interesting to compare the views of E. F. Schumacher and J. M. Keynes on the ethical aspects of economics – both the economic systems of which they were a part and economics as a subject. Both agreed that economics (as commonly understood and taught) applied to only a limited sphere of life. They agreed about the role of profits, the market and the love of money. And they both believed that there was much more to life than getting and spending. For Keynes, economic activity was the means to bring society to a position where the good life could be enjoyed. Schumacher was even more ambitious: he thought economic activity should be made part of the good life.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 33
Volume: 2
Issue: 2
Year: 2013
Month: October
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/economics-and-the-good-life-keynes-and-schumacher/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-2-2-Chick.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:2:y:2013:i:2:p:33

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Stuart Holland
Author-Email: sholland@fe.uc.pt
Author-Workplace-Name: Faculty of Economics of the University of Coimbra, Portugal
Author-Name: Teresa Carla Oliveira
Title: Missing Links: Hume, Smith, Kant and Economic Methodology
Abstract: This paper traces missing links in the history of economic thought. In outlining Hume's concept of 'the reflexive mind' it shows that this opened frontiers between philosophy and psychology which Bertrand Russell denied and which logical positivism in philosophy and positive economics displaced. It relates this to Hume's influence not only on Smith, but also on Schopenhauer and the later Wittgenstein, with parallels in Gestalt psychology and recent findings from neural research and cognitive psychology. It critiques Kant's reaction to Hume's claim that one may assume but cannot prove cause and effect and how Samuelson's Foundations of Economic Analysis has been Kantian but wrong in claims for axioms that are universal truths. It illustrates how Samuelson's presumption that language and mathematics are 'identical' was as mistaken as the logical atomism of Russell and the early Wittgenstein, relates this to Kleinian splitting, denial and projective identification and suggests that recovery of greater realism in economics needs to regain links with such philosophy and psychology.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 46
Volume: 2
Issue: 2
Year: 2013
Month: October
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/missing-links-hume-smith-kant-and-economic-methodology/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-2-2-HollandOliveira.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:2:y:2013:i:2:p:46

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Alessandro Roncaglia
Author-Email: alessandro.roncaglia@uniroma1.it
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Statistical Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome, Italy
Title: Should the History of Economic Thought be Included in Undergraduate Curricula?
Abstract: Mainstream views concerning the uselessness or usefulness of HET are illustrated. These rely on a hidden assumption: a 'cumulative view' according to which the provisional point of arrival of contemporary economics incorporates all previous contributions in an improved way. Critiques of positivism led philosophy of science to recognise the existence of different approaches – in economics, as in other sciences. Conceptualisation, recognised by Schumpeter as the first stage in economic theorising, is the stage in which the different visions of the world underlying the different approaches, take shape – and are better recognised. In this, HET plays an essential role. As an illustration, the differences between the classical and marginalist conceptualisations of the economy are illustrated. Thus HET is essential in both undergraduate and graduate economic curricula, as a decisive help towards a better understanding and evaluation of formalised theories/models in the first case, and as an education to the philological method of research, essential in the first stage of theorising, in the case of graduate curricula.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1
Volume: 3
Issue: 1
Year: 2014
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/should-the-history-of-economic-thought-be-included-in-undergraduate-curricula/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-1-Roncaglia.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:1:p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Nicholas J. Theocarakis
Author-Email: ntheocar@econ.uoa.gr
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Economics, Faculty of Economics and Politics, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece
Title: A commentary on Alessandro Roncaglia's paper: 'Should the History of Economic Thought be Included in Undergraduate Curricula?'
Abstract:
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 10
Volume: 3
Issue: 1
Year: 2014
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/a-commentary-on-alessandro-roncaglias-paper-should-the-history-of-economic-thought-be-included-in-undergraduate-curricula/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-1-Theocarakis.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:1:p:10

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Alex Rosenberg
Author-Email: alexrose@duke.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Philosophy, Duke University, USA
Title: From Rational Choice to Reflexivity: Learning from Sen, Keynes, Hayek, Soros, and most of all, from Darwin
Abstract: This paper identifies the major failings of mainstream economics and the rational choice theory it relies upon. These failures were identified by the four figures mentioned in the title: economics treats agents as rational fools; by the time the long run equilibrium arrives, we are all dead; the social, political and economic institutions that meet most urgent human needs most effectively could not have been the result of rational choice, but their 'spontaneous order' needs to be explained; human uncertainty and reflexivity prohibit a predictively useful rational choice approach to human affairs, and even limit its role in institution design. What unifies the perspectives of all four of these critics of neoclassical economics, however, is their implicit reliance or on need for a Darwinian perspective on human affairs.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 21
Volume: 3
Issue: 1
Year: 2014
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/from-rational-choice-to-reflexivity-learning-from-sen-keynes-hayek-soros-and-most-of-all-from-darwin/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-1-Rosenberg.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:1:p:21

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: David Andrews
Author-Email: david.andrews@oswego.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Economics, State University of New York at Oswego, USA
Title: Adam Smith's Natural Prices, the Gravitation Metaphor, and the Purposes of Nature
Abstract: Adam Smith's 'natural price' has long been interpreted as a 'normal price' or 'centre of gravitation price' based on the famous gravitation metaphor of the Wealth of Nations I.vii, natural in the sense that it is the price that would result if competition were truly free, unobstructed by monopoly or government regulation, and could also therefore be called normal price, appealing to a sense of natural opposed to that which is produced artificially. This essay has three purposes. First I criticise this interpretation of Smith's gravitation metaphor. For Smith, it is not a Newtonian metaphor for the attractive character of natural price, but rather an Aristotelian metaphor for the pattern of movement of market prices, in which natural price serves merely as a reference point. Second I present an interpretation of Smith's natural price based on his understanding of nature, in the context of his assertions that the goals of nature are the self-preservation of individuals and the propagation of species, goals humans pursue with divided labour under bonds of mutual dependence, facilitated by exchange and hence prices. The natural price of a commodity is the price that supports nature's goals by providing for the maintenance of those who participate in production and supply in a manner that is just sufficient for these activities to continue indefinitely. Third I highlight the similarity between natural prices construed in this way and the prices of Piero Sraffa's Production of Commodities by Means of Commodities.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 42
Volume: 3
Issue: 1
Year: 2014
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/adam-smiths-natural-prices-the-gravitation-metaphor-and-the-purposes-of-nature/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-1-Andrews.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:1:p:42

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Daniyal Khan
Author-Email: daniyalk@gmail.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Graduate student at the Department of Economics, The New School for Social Research, New York, USA
Title: Economics as a Science, Economics as a Vocation: A Weberian Examination of Robert Heilbroner's Philosophy of Economics
Abstract: In an attempt to re-envision economics, the paper analyses Robert Heilbroner's philosophy of economics through the lens of Max Weber's philosophy of science. Specifically, Heilbroner's position on vision, ideology and value-freedom is examined by contextualising it within a framework of Weberian science. Doing so leads to a better understanding of Heilbroner's seemingly contradictory statements about ideology as well as a re-interpretation of his position on the place of value-freedom (or a lack thereof) in economics. This inquiry also leads to a demonstration of (1) the relevance of Weber's work on methodology of science to contemporary issues in economics, and (2) the identification of a major shortcoming in Heilbroner's work. Overall, this leads to a clarification and reconstruction of Heilbroner's vision of economics as a science and as a vocation, which is seen to be a self-reflexive, reflective and dynamic process.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 56
Volume: 3
Issue: 1
Year: 2014
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/economics-as-a-science-economics-as-a-vocation-a-weberian-examination-of-robert-heilbroners-philosophy-of-economics/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-1-Khan.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:1:p:56

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Constantinos Repapis
Author-Email: c.repapis@gold.ac.uk
Author-Workplace-Name: Institute of Management Studies, Goldsmiths, University of London, UK
Title: J.M. Keynes, F.A. Hayek and the Common Reader
Abstract: This paper gives an account of the debate between F.A. Hayek and J.M. Keynes in the 1930s written for the general public. The purpose of this is twofold. First, to provide the general reader with a narrative of what happened, and pointers to further reading which are accessible to the non-specialist. Second, to discuss how academics can fruitfully bridge the gap between their specialist work and the public without reducing complex themes into one-dimensional narratives. I use the Keynes vs. Hayek debate as a case study on how this may be achieved.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1
Volume: 3
Issue: 2
Year: 2014
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/j-m-keynes-f-a-hayek-and-the-common-reader/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-2-Repapis.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:2:p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Jorge Morales Meoqui
Author-Email: jorgemorales3@gmail.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Independent Researcher
Title: Reconciling Ricardo's Comparative Advantage with Smith's Productivity Theory
Abstract: There are three main claims in the paper: first, there is sufficient evidence for affirming that Ricardo adhered to Smith's productivity theory; second, Ricardo's original demonstration of the comparative- advantage proposition is indeed compatible and complementary with respect to the latter; and third, Ricardo agreed with Smith's multifactorial explanation of the pattern of trade, which includes increasing returns and economies of scale. These results suggest that the level of compatibility between the international trade theories of Smith and Ricardo is significantly higher than it is currently reflected in the economic literature. They also add a new perspective to the ongoing process of reassessment of Smith's contributions to international trade theory, further strengthening the view that he was indeed an outstanding international trade theorist.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 21
Volume: 3
Issue: 2
Year: 2014
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/reconciling-ricardos-comparative-advantage-with-smiths-productivity-theory/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-2-MoralesMeoqui.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:2:p:21

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Grazia Ietto-Gillies
Author-Email: iettogg@lsbu.ac.uk
Author-Workplace-Name: London South Bank University and Birkbeck University of London, UK
Title: The Theory of the Transnational Corporation at 50+
Abstract: The paper briefly summarises the historical evolution of transnational corporations (TNCs) and their activities. It then introduces the major theories developed to explain the TNC. There is an attempt to place the theories historically, within the context of the socio-economic conditions and of the relevant economic ideas in which they were developed. The following theories are discussed: Hymer's, market power and control; Vernon's international product life cycle; the internalisation theory; Dunning's eclectic framework based on Ownership, Location, and Internalisation (OLI) advantages; The Scandinavian School; the evolutionary approaches of Cantwell and of Kogut and Zander; the New Trade theory applied to the TNC; the role of nation-states in the strategic behaviour of TNCs. There are some critical comments at the end of each presentation. A brief analysis of key elements in the theories, their differences and commonalities follows. It is pointed out that the pattern of development shows tensions between the following interconnected elements: (1) contents and methods of interest to Business Schools and to Economics Departments; (2) static versus dynamic approaches; (3) emphasis on efficiency versus strategic elements; (4) strategies towards rivals as well as towards other players in the economic system such as labour, governments and suppliers; (5) single- versus multi-disciplinary approaches; and micro versus macro approaches.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 38
Volume: 3
Issue: 2
Year: 2014
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-theory-of-the-transnational-corporation-at-50/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-2-Ietto-Gillies.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:2:p:38

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: John Cantwell
Author-Email: cantwell@business.rutgers.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey, USA
Title: A commentary on Grazia Ietto-Gillies' paper: 'The Theory of the Transnational Corporation at 50+'
Abstract: Go to Grazia Ietto-Gillies' paper here ›
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 58
Volume: 3
Issue: 2
Year: 2014
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/a-commentary-on-grazia-ietto-gillies-paper-the-theory-of-the-transnational-corporation-at-50/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-2-Cantwell.pdf
File-Format: Application/pdf
Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:2:p:58

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Grazia Ietto-Gillies
Author-Email: iettogg@lsbu.ac.uk
Author-Workplace-Name: London South Bank University and Birkbeck University of London, UK
Title: Reply to John Cantwell's Commentary on Grazia Ietto-Gillies' paper: 'The Theory of the Transnational Corporation at 50+'
Abstract: Go to John Cantwell's response to the original paper from here › Go to Grazia Ietto-Gillies' original paper from here ›
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 67
Volume: 3
Issue: 2
Year: 2014
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/reply-to-john-cantwells-commentary-on-grazia-ietto-gillies-paper-the-theory-of-the-transnational-corporation-at-50/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-2-Ietto-Gillies-Reply.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:2:p:67

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Claudio Gnesutta
Author-Email: claudio.gnesutta@uniroma1.it
Author-Workplace-Name: Faculty of Economics, La Sapienza University of Rome, Italy
Title: If 'Well-Being' is the Key Concept in Political Economy…
Abstract: If 'well-being' is to be the key concept in political economy, then economists are placed, from a methodological viewpoint, in an uncomfortable position. A well-being approach requires consideration of several non-economic dimensions strongly interrelated with the economic process, and failure to consider them means that the subsequent economic analysis cannot be based on steadily defined categories and, therefore, economists cannot value the full implications of their policy prescriptions. In this note, I show how an interrelated economic-social scheme able to analyse (sustainable) well-being calls for a broadening of the range of social factors interacting (in short and long term) with the market equilibria, and that this entails both new analytical categories and a new socio-economic relations model; in the absence of this apparatus, the effects of economic policies on society are not reliable and, therefore, ought to be systematically subject to a 'precaution principle'.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 70
Volume: 3
Issue: 2
Year: 2014
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/if-well-being-is-the-key-concept-in-political-economy/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-3-2-Gnesutta.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:3:y:2014:i:2:p:70

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: David Ellerman
Author-Email: david@ellerman.org
Author-Workplace-Name: University of California at Riverside, USA, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
Title: On the Renting of Persons: The Neo-Abolitionist Case Against Today's Peculiar Institution
Abstract: Liberal thought (in the sense of classical liberalism) is based on the juxtaposition of consent to coercion. Autocracy and slavery were seen as based on coercion whereas today's political democracy and economic 'employment system' are based on consent to voluntary contracts. This paper retrieves an almost forgotten dark side of contractarian thought that based autocracy and slavery on explicit or implicit voluntary contracts. To answer these 'best case' arguments for slavery and autocracy, the democratic and abolitionist movements forged arguments not simply in favour of consent, but arguments that voluntary contracts to legally alienate aspects of personhood were invalid 'even with consent' – which made the underlying rights inherently inalienable. Once understood, those arguments have the perhaps 'unintended consequence' of making the neo-abolitionist case for ruling out today's self-rental contract, the employer-employee contract. The paper has to also retrieve these inalienable rights arguments since they have been largely lost on the Left, not to mention in liberal thought.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1-20
Volume: 4
Issue: 1
Year: 2015
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/on-the-renting-of-persons-the-neo-abolitionist-case-against-todays-peculiar-institution/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-1-Ellerman.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:4:y:2015:i:1:p:1-20

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Alexander Tobon
Author-Email: alexander.tobon@udea.edu.co
Author-Workplace-Name: Universidad de Antioquia, Colombia and Université Jean Monnet, France
Author-Name: Nicolas Barbaroux
Author-Email: nicolas.barbaroux@univ-st-etienne.fr
Author-Workplace-Name: Universidad de Antioquia, Colombia and Université Jean Monnet, France
Title: Credit and Prices in Woodford's New Neoclassical Synthesis
Abstract: Following recent debates on the New Neoclassical Synthesis, the theory of monetary policy has been renewed. The prevailing method, illustrated by Woodford's version of Interest and Prices, is a Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium Model in which the old LM curve is voluntarily substituted by an optimal monetary rule. Such a turning point requires a peculiar set of assumptions, especially regarding monetary prices. The recent debate pays attention to de-emphasis on the nominal monetary aggregate, which does not play any explicit role in monetary policy deliberations. Following Calvo's model, Woodford's neo-Wicksellian framework only considered monetary prices in equilibrium. This article demonstrates that even though the New Neoclassical Synthesis considers it essential to have a monetary theory for policymaking, the former offers the same answers as the traditional static macroeconomics. More precisely, it shows that the use of dynamic optimisation – such as the one developed by Woodford's approach – does not contribute in a decisive way to improving our understanding of the role that money prices play in monetary theory. Woodford's canvas is silent about the mechanisms whereby monetary policy induces agents to adjust individual money prices to the values that generate an equilibrium price level. Thus, if we want to close this gap, it may be useful to consider a 'forward guidance' strategy. By means of such a tool, central bankers are able to shape the public's expectations on economic outcomes by pre-announcing the time path of future policy actions.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 21-46
Volume: 4
Issue: 1
Year: 2015
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/credit-and-prices-in-woodfords-new-neoclassical-synthesis/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-1-Tobon-Barbaroux.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:4:y:2015:i:1:p:21-46

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Florence Gauthier
Author-Email: gauthierflore@orange.fr
Author-Workplace-Name: Universite Paris, France
Title: Political Economy in the Eighteenth Century: Popular or Despotic? The Physiocrats Against the Right to Existence
Abstract: Control over food supply was advanced in the kingdom of France in the Eighteenth century by Physiocrat economists under the seemingly advantageous label of 'freedom of grain trade'. In 1764 these reforms brought about a rise in grain prices and generated an artificial dearth that ruined the poor, some of whom died from malnutrition. The King halted the reform and re-established the old regime of regulated prices; in order to maintain the delicate balance between prices and wages, the monarchy tried to limit speculation in subsistence goods and achieved some success in regulating the provisioning of public markets. Le Mercier de la Rivière concluded that executing these reforms required more effective political control. After 1774 the new king gave the Physiocratic reforms a second chance, reforming property rights and establishing an aristocracy of the landed rich. Again, this led to price hikes and as a result so-called 'popular emotions' erupted. Turgot ordered military intervention to dispel the protesters, marking a first rupture between the monarchy and the people over speculation on subsistence. Turgot's experiment failed and he was dismissed, but the Physiocracy had discovered that the market in subsistence offered new opportunities for economic power under the misleading legitimacy of 'economic laws'. Turgot's followers, Dupont de Nemours and Condorcet, continued to develop this 'theory' that was later translated into a 'scientific language' that ultimately asserted the autonomy of the economic sphere and its alleged independence from ethics and politics. The paper examines the continuity of events through the six great jacqueries and the French Revolution, including the all- important agrarian reform that ensued after 1792. Robespierre's concept of 'popular political economy' is analysed and compared with the notion of unfettered private property rights that lies at the heart of neoliberalism.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 47-66
Volume: 4
Issue: 1
Year: 2015
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/political-economy-in-the-eighteenth-century-popular-or-despotic-the-physiocrats-against-the-right-to-existence/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-1-Gauthier.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:4:y:2015:i:1:p:47-66

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Gavin Kennedy
Author-Email: gavinK9@gmail.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Emeritus Professor, Edinburgh Business School, Heriot-Watt University
Title: Adam Smith's Use of the 'Gravitation' Metaphor
Abstract: Adam Smith, in Wealth of Nations, used gravitation as a rhetorical metaphor and not in a formal philosophical sense, as used by Newton, Aristotle or Empedocles. Physical gravitational attraction is predictable, accurate and rule-bound; metaphoric gravity, as in relationships between natural and market prices, are neither strictly rule-based nor predictable. Market exchange relationships between independent people are subject to the vagaries of imperfect rhetorical persuasion.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 67-79
Volume: 4
Issue: 1
Year: 2015
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/adam-smiths-use-of-the-gravitation-metaphor/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-1-Kennedy.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:4:y:2015:i:1:p:67-79

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Manuel Wörsdörfer
Author-Email: woersdoerfer@wiwi.uni-frankfurt.de
Author-Workplace-Name: Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany
Title: 'Animal Behavioural Economics': Lessons Learnt From Primate Research
Abstract: The paper gives an overview of primate research and the economic-ethical 'lessons' we can derive from it. In particular, it examines the complex, multi-faceted and partially conflicting nature of (non-) human primates. Our closest living relatives, the chimpanzees and bonobos, apparently walk on two legs: a selfish and a groupish leg. Given evolutionary continuity and gradualism between monkeys, apes and humans, human primates seem to be bipolar apes as well. They, too, tend to display a dual structure: there seems to be a pro-social and a self-interested side to our species and a bipolar tension seems to exist between competition and cooperation respectively between self-interest and the common good. We are apparently at the same time Homines oeconomici and Homines culturali. Our inner ape tries to combine self-interested and common good motives. Based on de Waal's Russian doll model, the essay investigates the evolutionary origins of morality and 'eusociality'. With the help of selected case studies stemming from behavioural sciences/economics, the paper illustrates examples of empathy, altruism, reciprocal fairness, pro-social and other-regarding preferences, inequity aversion and altruistic punishment in (non-)human primates. Beside this selfless and groupish side, the paper also reflects on the self-interest and egoistic nature of (non-)human primates and the behavioural and cognitive differences between monkeys, apes and humans.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 80-106
Volume: 4
Issue: 1
Year: 2015
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/animal-behavioural-economics-lessons-learnt-from-primate-research/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-1-Worsdorfer.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:4:y:2015:i:1:p:80-106

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Patrizio Lainà
Author-Email: patrizio.laina@helsinki.fi
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Political and Economic Studies, University of Helsinki, Finland
Title: Proposals for Full-Reserve Banking: A Historical Survey from David Ricardo to Martin Wolf
Abstract: Full-reserve banking, which prohibits private money creation, has not been implemented since the 19th century. Thereafter, bank deposits became the dominant means of payment and have retained their position until today. The specific contribution of this paper is to provide a comprehensive outlook on the historical and contemporary proposals for full-reserve banking. The proposals for full-reserve banking have become particularly popular after serious financial crises.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1
Volume: 4
Issue: 2
Year: 2015
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/proposals-for-full-reserve-banking-a-historical-survey-from-david-ricardo-to-martin-wolf/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-2-Laina.pdf
File-Format: Application/pdf
Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:4:y:2015:i:2:p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Charles A. E. Goodhart
Author-Email: caegoodhart@aol.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Financial Markets Group, London School of Economics, and Department of Economics, University of Copenhagen
Author-Name: Meinhard A. Jensen
Author-Email: meinhardaj@gmail.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Financial Markets Group, London School of Economics, and Department of Economics, University of Copenhagen
Title: A Commentary on Patrizio Lainà's 'Proposals for Full-Reserve Banking: A Historical Survey from David Ricardo to Martin Wolf'
Abstract:
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 20
Volume: 4
Issue: 2
Year: 2015
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/a-commentary-on-patrizio-lainas-proposals-for-full-reserve-banking-a-historical-survey-from-david-ricardo-to-martin-wolf/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-2-GoodhartJensen.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:4:y:2015:i:2:p:20

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Scott Scheall
Author-Email: scott.scheall@asu.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Science, Technology, and Society, Arizona State University, USA
Title: A Hayekian Explanation of Hayek's 'Epistemic Turn'
Abstract: The present essay aims to account for F.A. Hayek's oft-noted 'turn' away from technical economics to concerns of a more philosophical nature. In particular, the paper seeks an explanatory principle that reconciles various elements of both continuity and discontinuity in Hayek's intellectual development, especially with respect to the evolution of his arguments concerning economic fluctuations. The essay uncovers such an explanatory principle in Hayek's own methodology of sciences of complex phenomena. According to this principle, an inquirer who confronts phenomena too complex for adequate explanation on the basis of current knowledge must move to a more general, albeit less testable, explanation. This is precisely what occurred in the evolution of Hayek's thought concerning trade cycles. The concluding section considers the implications of the argument for the extensive secondary literature on Hayek's 'transformation'.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 32
Volume: 4
Issue: 2
Year: 2015
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/a-hayekian-explanation-of-hayeks-epistemic-turn/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-2-Scheall.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Ajit Sinha
Author-Email: sinha_a99@yahoo.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Azim Premji University, Bangalore, India
Title: A Reflection on the Samuelson-Garegnani Debate
Abstract: This paper argues that Samuelson's criticisms of Sraffa mainly concentrated on Sraffa's claim that the propositions of his book (Sraffa 1960) did not depend on the assumption of constant returns to scale. Garegnani's defence of Sraffa against Samuelson's criticisms remained ineffective because Garegnani's own interpretation of Sraffa's prices as classical 'centre of gravitation' or 'long term' prices requires constant returns to scale assumption. The paper goes on to critique Garegnani's interpretation of Sraffa and the classical economics to show that Garegnani's interpretation of Sraffa and the classical economics is highly problematic and that Samuelson's criticism of Sraffa does not hit the target because Sraffa's prices are not necessarily 'equilibrium' prices and therefore there is no need of returns to scale assumption in his theory.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 48
Volume: 4
Issue: 2
Year: 2015
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/a-reflection-on-the-samuelson-garegnani-debate/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-2-Sinha.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Peter H. Bent
Author-Email: peter.bent@economics.ox.ac.uk
Author-Workplace-Name: Research Fellow, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, and PhD Student, Department of Economics, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Title: The Political Power of Economic Ideas: Protectionism in Turn of the Century America
Abstract: One of the main economic debates taking place in late-nineteenth and early-twentieth-century America was between supporters of protectionism and advocates of free-trade policies. Protectionists won this debate, as the 1897 Dingley Tariff raised tariff rates to record highs. An analysis of this outcome highlights the overlapping interests of Republican politicians and business groups. Both of these groups endorsed particular economic arguments in favour of protectionism. Contemporary studies by academic economists informed the debates surrounding protectionist policies at this time, and also analysed the impacts of these policies. Evidence from politicians, business owners, and economists provides a broad view of who favoured protectionist policies in turn-of-the-century America. This analysis also focuses on how the impacts of these policies were studied and presented in contemporary academic and public discourse.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 68
Volume: 4
Issue: 2
Year: 2015
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/%ef%bf%bcthe-political-power-of-economic-ideas-protectionism-%ef%bf%bcin-turn-of-the-century-america/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-2-Bent.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Eithne Murphy
Author-Email: eithne.murphy@nuigalway.ie
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Economics, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland
Title: A Commentary on Peter Bent's ‘The Political Power of Economic Ideas: Protectionism in Turn of the Century America’
Abstract:
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 80
Volume: 4
Issue: 2
Year: 2015
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/a-commentary-on-peter-bents-the-political-power-of-economic-ideas-protectionism-in-turn-of-the-century-america/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-4-2-Murphy.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: M. Shahid Alam
Author-Email: nurzangi@gmail.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Economics, Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA
Title: Commodities in Economics: Loving or Hating Complexity
Abstract: A review of economic thought since the sixteenth century reveals two streams of economic discourse, dirigisme and laissez-faire. Starting with the mercantilists, dirigiste approaches to economics embrace the real-world complexity of commodities that often differ greatly in attributes that are growth- and rent- augmenting. Most importantly, this means that free trade is likely to be polarising: it concentrates growth- and rent-augmenting commodities in countries that already enjoy a head start in these commodities. Advanced countries, therefore, support laissez-faire, while lagging countries tend to support dirigisme. In order to rationalise their laissez-faire stance, advanced countries began developing a new economic discourse that strips commodities of their complexity. The foundations for this ideological reconstruction of economics were first laid by Adam Smith; this process eventually reached its climax with the neoclassical economists who stripped commodities down to one attribute: their capital intensity. In opposition to this laissez-faire economics, other writers, supportive of the interests of lagging countries, brought complexity back into their economic discourse; they argued that lagging countries had a fighting chance of catching up to advanced economies only by indigenising a growing array of growth- and rent-augmenting commodities.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1
Volume: 5
Issue: 1
Year: 2016
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/commodities-in-economics-loving-or-hating-complexity/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-5-1-Alam.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: David Ellerman
Author-Email: david@ellerman.org
Author-Workplace-Name: University of California at Riverside, USA, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
Title: The Labour Theory of Property and Marginal Productivity Theory
Abstract: After Marx, dissenting economics almost always used 'the labour theory' as a theory of value. This paper develops a modern treatment of the alternative labour theory of property that is essentially the property theoretic application of the juridical principle of responsibility: impute legal responsibility in accordance with who was in fact responsible. To understand descriptively how assets and liabilities are appropriated in normal production, a 'fundamental myth' needs to be cleared away, and then the market mechanism of appropriation can be understood. On the normative side, neoclassical theory represents marginal productivity theory as showing that (a metaphorical version of) the imputation principle is satisfied ('people get what they produce') in competitive enterprises. Since that shows the moral commitment of neoclassical economics to the imputation principle, the labour theory of property is presented here as the actual non-metaphorical application of the imputation principle to property appropriation. The property-theoretic analysis at the firm level shows how the neoclassical (and much heterodox) analysis in terms of 'distributive shares' wholly misframed the basic questions. Finally, the paper shows how the imputation principle (modernised labour theory of property) is systematically violated in the present wage labour system of renting persons. The paper can be seen as taking up the recent challenge posed by Donald Katzner for a dialogue between neoclassical and heterodox microeconomics.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 19
Volume: 5
Issue: 1
Year: 2016
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-labour-theory-of-property-and-marginal-productivity-theory/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-5-1-Ellerman.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Jamie Morgan
Title: Power, Property, the Law, and the Corporation – a Commentary on David Ellerman's paper: 'The Labour Theory of Property and Marginal Productivity Theory'
Abstract: The point of departure of David Ellerman's paper is that the role of labour in economics can be looked at in a fundamentally different way than has typically been the case. The paper's purpose is, therefore, oppositional. However, it cannot simply be dismissed. It is clearly articulated, well reasoned, and most importantly, thought provoking. It requires one to rethink how one conceives some basic issues in economics. As such, one does not need to be entirely convinced by the argument to consider it worthy of dissemination. At the same time, if one subscribes to the ethic of structured or critical pluralism one must also consider the pressure points of the argument (see Dow, 2004; Dobusch and Kapeller, 2012). Below, I briefly reconstruct Ellerman's core claims and provide some comment on that argument. Read David Ellerman's paper "The Labour Theory of Property and Marginal Productivity Theory"
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 37
Volume: 5
Issue: 1
Year: 2016
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/power-property-the-law-and-the-corporation-a-commentary-on-david-ellermans-paper-the-labour-theory-of-property-and-marginal-productivity-theory/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-5-1-Morgan.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Asad Zaman
Author-Email: asad.zaman@alumni.stanford.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Vice Chancellor, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics
Title: The Methodology of Polanyi's Great Transformation
Abstract: Polanyi's book, The Great Transformation, provides an analysis of the emergence and significance of capitalist economic structures which differs radically from those currently universally taught in economic textbooks. This analysis is based on a methodological approach which is also radically different from existing methodologies for economics, and more generally social science. This methodology is used by Polanyi without explicit articulation. Our goal in this article is to articulate the methodology used in this book to bring out the several dimensions on which it differs from current approaches to social science. Among the key differences Polanyi provides substantial scope for human agency and capability to change the course of history. He also shows that the social, political and economic spheres of human existence are deeply interlinked and cannot be analysed in isolation, as current approaches assume.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 44
Volume: 5
Issue: 1
Year: 2016
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-methodology-of-polanyis-great-transformation/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-5-1-Zaman.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:5:y:2016:i:1:p:44

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Anne Mayhew
Author-Email: amayhew@utk.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA
Title: A Commentary on Asad Zaman's paper: 'The Methodology of Polanyi's Great Transformation'
Abstract: Read Asad Zaman's paper “The Methodology of Polanyi's Great Transformation
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 64
Volume: 5
Issue: 1
Year: 2016
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/a-commentary-on-asad-zamans-paper-the-methodology-of-polanyis-great-transformation/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-5-1-Mayhew.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Jorge Buzaglo
Author-Email: j.buzaglo@telia.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Independent economist, Stockholm
Title: Expanding Human Capabilities: Lange’s “Observations” Updated for the 21st Century
Abstract: Poland has produced two of the greatest economists of the past century, namely Michał Kalecki and Oskar Lange. Both worked with a wide and penetrating view of the economy and society, more typical of the great classical economists than of those of their own time. During the post-World War II 'Golden Age of Growth', while Keynes was the patron saint of economic theory and policy in the industrialised capitalist countries, Kalecki and Lange had a similar influence and role among the developing nations and – perhaps to a lesser extent – in socialist countries. Kalecki's 'The problem of financing of economic development' (Kalecki, 1954), and Lange's 'Some observations on input-output analysis' (Lange, 1957), in particular,deeply influenced the approach to economic and social development of a whole strand of structural economics, both in terms of economic analysis and practical policy. With the end of the Golden Age and the momentous neoliberal reaction then started, they became almost forgotten. The economics of Kalecki, however, has inspired in the last few decades the renaissance of a genuine – albeit still marginal(ised) – form of Keynesianism, the so called 'post-Keynesianism' ('bastard Keynesianism', as Joan Robinson called it, being the dominant, mainstream form of Keynesianism). Oskar Lange, on the other hand, does not yet seem to have been re-discovered to inspire a similar renaissance of advanced analysis and planning of policies for modern structural change and development. This paper proposes such a re-discovery. The main concern of Lange's 'Observations' is the appropriate intersectoral allocation of investment for efficient output growth. While output growth is still one of the main objectives in most societies, the growth of human capabilities should be an increasingly relevant concern, both in its own right, and in view of the existing ecological constraints. Buzaglo (2014a; b) postulated the existence of an  (aleph) matrix, describing the proportions of the different capabilities necessary for the achievement of every particular capability. The present paper is about introducing capabilities within Lange's framework of analysis. A Lange-inspired analysis investigates the appropriate structures and properties of capability-enhancing growth paths.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1 - 11
Volume: 5
Issue: 2
Year: 2016
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/expanding-human-capabilities-langes-observations-updated-for-the-21st-century/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-5-2-Buzaglo.pdf
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Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Paul Auerbach
Author-Email: p.auerbach@kingston.ac.uk
Author-Workplace-Name: Kingston University, London, UK
Title: Commentary on Jorge Buzaglo ‘Expanding Human Capabilities: Lange’s “Observations” Updated for the 21st Century’
Abstract: Read Jorge Buzaglo's paper 'Expanding Human Capabilities: Lange's "Observations" Updated for the 21st Century' ›
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 12 - 18
Volume: 5
Issue: 2
Year: 2016
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/commentary-on-jorge-buzaglo-expanding-human-capabilities-langes-observations-updated-for-the-21st-century/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-5-2-Auerbach.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:5:y:2016:i:2:p:12

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: David Orrell
Author-Email: dorrell@systemsforecasting.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Systems Forecasting, Toronto, Canada
Title: A Quantum Theory of Money and Value
Abstract: The answer to the question 'what is money?' has changed throughout history. During the Gold Standard era, money was seen as gold or silver (the theory known as bullionism). In the early 20th century, the alternative theory known as chartalism proposed that money was a token chosen by the state for payment of taxes. Today, many economists take an agnostic line, and argue that money is best defined in terms of its function, e.g. as a neutral medium of exchange. This paper argues that none of these approaches adequately describes the nature of money, and proposes a new theory, inspired by non-Newtonian physics, which takes into account the dualistic real/virtual properties and complex nature of money. The theory is applied to the example of the emergence of cybercurrencies.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 19 - 28
Volume: 5
Issue: 2
Year: 2016
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/a-quantum-theory-of-money-and-value/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-5-2-Orrell.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:5:y:2016:i:2:p:19

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Bruna Bruno
Author-Email: brbruno@unisa.it
Author-Workplace-Name: University of Salerno, Italy
Author-Name: Marisa Faggini
Author-Email: mfaggini@unisa.it
Author-Workplace-Name: University of Salerno, Italy
Author-Name: Anna Parziale
Author-Email: aparziale@unisa.it
Author-Workplace-Name: University of Salerno, Italy
Title: Complexity Modelling in Economics: the State of the Art
Abstract: The economic crisis happening across the world over the last few years describes a range of interdependencies and interactions,and has highlighted the fundamentalf laws of neoclassical economic theory: its unedifying focus on prediction and, above all, its inability to explain how the economy really works. As such, it is increasingly recognised that economic phenomena cannot be exclusively investigated as being derived from deterministic, predictable and mechanistic dynamics. Instead, a new approach is required by which history-dependence, organic and ever-evolving processes are also accounted for. As this view implies new challenges and opportunities for policy, we will focus our attention on innovative components of Complexity Theory for the study of economics and the evaluation of public policies.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 29 - 43
Volume: 5
Issue: 2
Year: 2016
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/complexity-modelling-in-economics-the-state-of-the-art/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-5-2-Bruno-et-al.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:5:y:2016:i:2:p:29

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: David Ellerman
Author-Email: david@ellerman.org
Author-Workplace-Name: University of California at Riverside, USA, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
Title: Reply to Commentaries on ‘The Labour Theory of Property and Marginal Productivity Theory’
Abstract: Jamie Morgan's commentary (Morgan, 2016) on my paper 'The Labour Theory of Property and Marginal Productivity Theory' (Ellerman, 2016) and Ted Burczak's later comments (Burczak, 2016) raise a number of issues that surely will occur to other readers and that need to be addressed. I take the occasion to expand upon the arguments and to explore some related issues. In the narrative that unfolds, Frank H. Knight plays the role of the sophisticated defender of the system of renting, hiring and employing human beings. He was quite clear that the social role of economics is to develop an idealised model, the competitive free enterprise model, and then to frame the normative discussion in terms of that model. Knight would agree with the whole thread of heterodox 'criticism' that the actual economy falls far short of the ideal – which is why I largely eschewed the descriptive shortcomings of ideal model as a purported model of the actual economy. Instead my paper focused on developing a critique of the key part of the idealised model, the marginal productivity theory of distribution under competitive conditions. That critique is based on the usual juridical principle of imputing legal responsibility in accordance with factual responsibility – the principle whose property-theoretic application is the modern treatment of the labour theory of property. Historically, heterodox economics faced a fork in the road in the 19th century: whether to criticise 'the system' by developing the inchoate 'labour theory' as a theory of value or a theory of property. Marx and much of left-wing economics took the labour-theory-of-value road, whereas my paper is part of a modern attempt – Thomas Hodgskin (1832) being an earlier attempt – to take the labour-theory-of-property road. As we will see, much of the debate still revolves around these two roads. Read David Ellerman's original paper "The Labour Theory of Property and Marginal Productivity Theory" › Read Jamie Morgan's commentary on David Ellerman's paper ›
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 44 - 61
Volume: 5
Issue: 2
Year: 2016
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/reply-to-commentaries-on-the-labour-theory-of-property-and-marginal-productivity-theory/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-5-2-Ellerman.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:5:y:2016:i:2:p:44

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Ron Wallace
Author-Email: ronald.wallace@ucf.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Anthropology, University of Central Florida, USA
Title: The Signature of Risk: Agent-based Models, Boolean Networks and Economic Vulnerability
Abstract: Neoclassical economic theory, which still dominates the science, has proven inadequate to predict financial crises. In an increasingly globalised world, the consequences of that inadequacy are likely to become more severe. This article attributes much of the difficulty to an emphasis on equilibrium as an idealised property of economic systems. Alternatively, this article proposes that actual economies are typically out of balance, and that any equilibrium which may exist is transitory. That single changed assumption is central to complexity economics, a view which is presented in detail. It is suggested that economic crises will be most effectively avoided when economists utilise methods, grounded in complexity theory, which can identify threat in an early stage. As a programmatic example, the use of Agent-Based Models (ABMs) combined with Boolean networks (BNs), is defended as a promising method for recognising vulnerability.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1 - 15
Volume: 6
Issue: 1
Year: 2017
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-signature-of-risk-agent-based-models-boolean-networks-and-economic-vulnerability/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-6-1-Wallace.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:1:p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Brian O’Boyle
Author-Email: boboyle@stangelas.nuigalway.ie
Author-Workplace-Name: National University of Ireland Galway
Author-Name: Terrence McDonough
Author-Email: terrence.mcdonough@nuigalway.ie
Author-Workplace-Name: National University of Ireland Galway
Title: Bourgeois Ideology and Mathematical Economics – A Reply to Tony Lawson
Abstract: This paper challenges Tony Lawson's account of the relationship between mainstream economics and ideology along two key axes. First off, we argue that Newtonian physics has been the primary version of pro-science ideology within mainstream economics, rather than mathematics per se. Secondly, we argue that the particular uses of mathematics within mainstream economics have always been ideological in the pro-capitalist sense of the term. In order to defend these claims we develop a line of argument that Lawson has thus far strategically avoided. Namely, we view mainstream economic theory as an integrated theoretical paradigm with intrinsic links to the capitalist economy. Viewed in this way, it becomes clear that Lawson's (trans) historical account of ideology is too general to capture the complexity of the relationship between natural science, mathematics and mainstream methods. Having briefly outlined Lawson's central argument, we highlight the non-mathematical methods underpinning Classical Political Economy. Thereafter, we assess the nature of the mathematics associated with the Marginal Revolution of the 1870s and the Formalist Revolution of the 1950s.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 16 - 34
Volume: 6
Issue: 1
Year: 2017
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/bourgeois-ideology-and-mathematical-economics-a-reply-to-tony-lawson/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-6-1-OBoyle-McDonough.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:1:p:16

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Jorge Morales Meoqui
Author-Email: jorgemorales3@gmail.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Independent Researcher
Title: Ricardo's Numerical Example Versus Ricardian Trade Model: a Comparison of Two Distinct Notions of Comparative Advantage
Abstract: The so-called Ricardian trade model of contemporary economic textbooks is not a rational reconstruction of Ricardo's famous numerical example in chapter seven of the Principles. It differs from the latter in terms of the definition of the four numbers, relevant cost comparison, rule for specialisation, assumptions and theoretical implications. Thus, the widespread critique regarding the unrealistic assumptions of the textbook trade model does not apply to Ricardo's original proof of comparative advantage.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 35 - 55
Volume: 6
Issue: 1
Year: 2017
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/ricardos-numerical-example-versus-ricardian-trade-model-a-comparison-of-two-distinct-notions-of-comparative-advantage/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-6-1-MoralesMeoqui.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:1:p:35

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Michael Margolis
Author-Email: mmargolis6@gmail.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Universidad de Guanajuato, Mexico
Title: Graphs as a Tool for the Close Reading of Econometrics (Settler Mortality is not a Valid Instrument for Institutions)
Abstract: Recently developed theory using directed graphs permits simple and precise statements about the validity of causal inferences in most cases. Applying this while reading econometric papers can make it easy to understand assumptions that are vague in prose, and to isolate those assumptions that are crucial to support the main causal claims. The method is illustrated here alongside a close reading of the paper that introduced the use of settler mortality to instrument the impact of institutions on economic development. Two causal pathways that invalidate the instrument are found not to be blocked by satisfactory strategies. The estimates in the original paper, and in many that have used the instrument since, should be considered highly suspect.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 56 - 82
Volume: 6
Issue: 1
Year: 2017
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/graphs-as-a-tool-for-the-close-reading-of-econometrics-settler-mortality-is-not-a-valid-instrument-for-institutions/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-6-1-Margolis.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:1:p:56

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Arne Heise
Author-Email: Arne.Heise@wiso.uni-hamburg.de
Author-Workplace-Name: Hamburg University, Germany
Title: Walras' Law in the Context of Pre-Analytic Visions
Abstract: Walras' law is a central tenet of economic theory. For mainstream economics, it is a 'plausibility check' for model-building; for heterodox economists, the refutation of Walras' law is key to understanding Keynes' revolutionary contribution to a new economic paradigm. The purpose of this short research note is to elaborate on the possibility of a refutation of Walras' law and to inquire into its preconditions. It will be argued that this can be achieved on the basis of an alternative pre-analytic vision of a genuine monetary economy as foreshadowed by John Maynard Keynes.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 83 - 96
Volume: 6
Issue: 1
Year: 2017
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/walras-law-in-the-context-of-pre-analytic-visions/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/WEA-ET-6-1-Heise.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:1:p:83

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Eithne Murphy
Author-Email: eithne.murphy@nuigalway.ie
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Economics, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland
Title: Cournot's Trade Theory and its Neoclassical Appropriation: Lessons to be Learnt about the Use and Abuse of Models
Abstract: This paper seeks to rehabilitate the trade theory of Augustin Cournot. In contrast to the widespread awareness among neoclassical economists of Cournot's contribution to microeconomics, there is general ignorance of his trade theory, which an earlier generation of neoclassical theorists attributed to its erroneous conclusions. I dispute this view and attempt to show the internal consistency of Cournot's trade analysis. While the assumptions underpinning his trade theory could be considered extreme, they need to be understood in the light of his methodological commitments, which included a rejection of utility in the theory of wealth, and a dismissal of Say's law regarding general employment. Furthermore, I argue that the assumptions underpinning neoclassical trade theory are no less extreme, even as their theoretical conclusions are (similarly) logically consistent. All of this serves to highlight the insufficiency of theoretical rigour in establishing the relevance of a theory; the importance of history of thought in reminding us that more than one theoretical perspective exists; and, of course, the indispensability of empirical engagement in trying to arbitrate between contrasting theoretical positions.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1 - 13
Volume: 6
Issue: 2
Year: 2017
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/cournots-trade-theory-and-its-neoclassical-appropriation-lessons-to-be-learnt-about-the-use-and-abuse-of-models/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2017/10/WEA-ET-6-2-Murphy.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:2:p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: David Orrell
Author-Email: dorrell@systemsforecasting.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Systems Forecasting, Toronto, Canada
Title: A Quantum Theory of Money and Value, Part 2: The Uncertainty Principle
Abstract: Economic forecasting is famously unreliable. While this problem has traditionally been blamed on theories such as the efficient market hypothesis or even the butterfly effect, an alternative explanation is the role of money – something which is typically downplayed or excluded altogether from economic models. Instead, models tend to treat the economy as a kind of barter system in which money's only role is as an inert medium of exchange. Prices are assumed to almost perfectly reflect the 'intrinsic value' of an asset. This paper argues, however, that money is better seen as an inherently dualistic phenomenon, which merges precise number with the fuzzy concept of value. Prices are not the optimal result of a mechanical, Newtonian process, but are an emergent property of the money system. And just as quantum physics has its uncertainty principle, so the economy is an uncertain process which can only be approximated by mathematical models. Acknowledging the dynamic and paradoxical qualities of money changes our ontological framework for economic modelling, and for making decisions under uncertainty. Applications to areas of risk analysis, forecasting and modelling are discussed, and it is proposed that a greater appreciation of the fundamental causes of uncertainty will help to make the economy a less uncertain place.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 14 - 26
Volume: 6
Issue: 2
Year: 2017
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/a-quantum-theory-of-money-and-value-part-2-the-uncertainty-principle/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2017/10/WEA-ET-6-2-Orrell.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:2:p:14

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Jean Cartelier
Author-Email: jean.cartelier@gmail.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Université Paris-Ouest, EconomiX
Title: About Waged Labour: From Monetary Subordination to Exploitation
Abstract: Wage-earners voluntarily accept to work under the control, and for the account of, firms run by entrepreneurs1; they do not decide what, how and how much, they must produce; wage-earners are not responsible for the consequences of their activities when they comply with entrepreneurs' orders12; inside the firm, wage-earners are subordinates. Outside the firm, wage-earners freely choose the way they spend their wages in the markets for commodities and services. Such is the 'stylised fact' which characterises the wage relationship in our economies. Any theory of the wage relationship should account for this 'stylised fact' by deriving it from a consistent set of assumptions and propositions. Three main propositions are advocated in this paper:
  1. Mainstream economists conceive the 'wage' as being the price of a commodity ('labour power' or 'human labour') determined by a market – as for any other commodity and service. As a consequence, the wage relationship is thought of as an exchange relation ruled by equivalence; this view cannot be derived from the usual basic assumptions without violating the very logic of mainstream theory. Following this logic:
  2. In any case, the 'stylised fact' mentioned above is not accounted for by mainstream theory.
  3. 'Wage' is the name of the payment entrepreneurs give to other people with the view to making them participate in production under their control and for their account; wage payment is neither a purchase nor a sale – it just allows wage-earners to enter the market and spend in order to acquire the commodities they desire
  4. Wage-earners are, economically speaking, a means used by entrepreneurs for their own ends; exploitation (Fleurbaey's M-exploitation) is inherent in the wage relationship.
Propositions 2 and 3 do not fit general equilibrium theory (inspired by Walras and rationalised by Arrow- Debreu); they do not fit modern mainstream theory either. They have no room in the theory of prices of production (inspired by Ricardo and rationalised by Sraffa). Moreover, they are not compatible with Marx's theory of labour power. An alternative approach is needed to satisfy them. Paving the way for that alternative theory requires us to show that 'human labour' cannot belong to the commodity space from the very point of view of mainstream theory; a sharp incompatibility between assumptions and conclusions would follow, and justify resorting to an alternative approach. This is our first step. A second step is to effectively resort to a monetary analysis – the alternative approach to real analysis, according to Schumpeter in his History of economic analysis. In a nutshell, we have to discard the commodity space postulate, and to think of economic relations as money mediation. Instead of a commodity space, we presuppose money to be a unit of account ($) combined with a means of payment. Instead of a permutation of goods and services exchanged amongst people, economic relations are payments. Individuals are no longer endowments and preferences, but accounts into which payments write down quantities of $. Conditions of people may differ according to the form of money circulation – this view allows us to deal with different types of economic relations; for what matters here, the wage relationship involves a specific form of circulation not reducible to that of exchange. The final step is to suggest that exploitation is inherent in the wage relationship; such exploitation has nothing to do with justice, since there is no norm whatsoever for the level of wage; it is also quite different from the exploitation Marx thought he had unveiled. This exploitation is simply due to the special situation of wage-earners vis-à-vis the market, which a specific form of circulation makes clear. 1 'Entrepreneur' here means, following Coase, 'the person or persons who, in a competitive system, take the place of the price mechanism in the direction of resources' (Coase, 1937, p. 388). 2 David Ellerman distinguishes between factual/de facto and legal or de jure responsibility. What I mean here is economic responsibility only. Another way at looking at it may use David Ellerman's propositions. The 'Invisible Judge' market gives the entrepreneur the property of raw material and labour – and also of the finished product sold in the market. The market gives nothing to the wage-earner inside the firm; outside the firm it gives her the property of consumption of goods she acquires out of her wage. Inside the firm, the wage-earner is not economically responsible. Arguing that if she kills someone, the wage- earner is responsible has nothing to do with the 'Invisible Judge'!
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 27 - 36
Volume: 6
Issue: 2
Year: 2017
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/about-waged-labour-from-monetary-subordination-to-exploitation/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2017/10/WEA-ET-6-2-Cartelier.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:2:p:27

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: David Ellerman
Author-Email: david@ellerman.org
Author-Workplace-Name: University of California at Riverside, USA, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
Title: Comment on 'About Waged Labour: From Monetary Subordination to Exploitation'
Abstract:
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 37 - 44
Volume: 6
Issue: 2
Year: 2017
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/comment-on-about-waged-labour-from-monetary-subordination-to-exploitation/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2017/10/WEA-ET-6-2-Ellerman.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:2:p:37

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Stavros Mavroudeas
Author-Email: smavro@uom.edu.g
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Economics, University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki, Greece
Title: Is Cartelier's Monetary Approach a Convincing Alternative to the Labour Theory of Value? A Comment
Abstract:
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 45 - 52
Volume: 6
Issue: 2
Year: 2017
Month: September
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/is-carteliers-monetary-approach-a-convincing-alternative-to-the-labour-theory-of-value-a-comment/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2017/10/WEA-ET-6-2-Mavroudeas.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:2:p:45

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Sebastian Thieme
Author-Email: sebastian.thieme@mem-wirtschaftsethik.de
Author-Workplace-Name: Schasching-Fellow 2015/2016 of the Catholic Social Academy of Austria, Vienna, Austria
Title: Spiethoff's Economic Styles: a Pluralistic Approach?
Abstract: The main scope of this article is to introduce Spiethoff's economic styles approach to economists outside the German-speaking scientific community. It also provides a contemporary (new) reading and interpretation of this approach, especially regarding the methodology Spiethoff used in his research. Essentially, it will be shown that Spiethoff applies a kind of 'abductive' thinking that is usually ignored. Especially in the recent debate about pluralism in economics, the dichotomy of induction and deduction excludes the concept of abduction. Against this background, the article highlights what Spiethoff's economic styles approach could add to the current debate regarding pluralism in economics.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1 - 23
Volume: 7
Issue: 1
Year: 2018
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/spiethoffs-economic-styles-a-pluralistic-approach/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2018/04/WEA-ET-7-1-Thieme.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:7:y:2018:i:1:p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Ramzi Mabsout
Author-Email: rm95@aub.edu.lb
Author-Workplace-Name: American University of Beirut
Title: The Backward Induction Controversy as a Metaphorical Problem
Abstract: The backward induction controversy in game theory flared up and then practically ended within a decade – the 1990s. The protagonists, however, did not converge on an agreement about the source of the controversy. Why was this the case, if opposing sides had access to the same modelling techniques and empirical facts? In this paper I offer an explanation for this controversy and its unsettled end. The answer is not to be found in the modelling claims made by the opposing protagonists, but in the tacit metaphors they operate under. Aristotle defined metaphor as giving a 'thing a name that belongs to something else' (Poetica, 1457b). The meaning of metaphors has not changed much since then – in contrast to models which are comparatively new, and still not well-understood, scientific tools. The controversy of backward induction in game theory provides a test bed for the explanatory power of metaphors. This paper frames the controversy in terms of metaphor choice to provide a common framework for the protagonists. This results in the identification of three different domains – mathematical logic, game theory and the world – each connected to the other via different metaphors. The controversy around backward induction is placed in, and tentatively explained by, this framework.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 24 - 49
Volume: 7
Issue: 1
Year: 2018
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-backward-induction-controversy-as-a-metaphorical-problem/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2018/04/WEA-ET-7-1-Mabsout.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:7:y:2018:i:1:p:24

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Daniel Linotte
Author-Email: daniel.linotte@gmail.com
Author-Workplace-Name: St Antony’s College, Oxford, UK
Title: Reassessing Marshall's Producers' Surplus: a Case for Protectionism
Abstract: The rationale for liberal economic policies refers inter alia to the so-called producer and consumer surpluses, namely welfare concepts which were proposed by Alfred Marshall in his seminal work Principles of Economics, first published in 1890. In the case of trade policy, relying on surpluses and referring to the 'small country case', it is recommended to remove tariff barriers imposed on the imports of commodities because it should increase welfare and, in theory at least, the losers of such a trade policy orientation can be compensated with the use of adequate transfers from winners. Despite extensive use, the concept of surpluses still raises key questions that may alter the case for free trade. Thus, from a purely semantic perspective, the concept of producer, as presented in Marshall's work, seems to be broader than the concept which is proposed in the dominant economic discourse; in other words, workers should also be seen as producers. Assuming that the workers are considered as producers, their wage rents must be taken into account when discussing the impacts of trade liberalisation; in addition, the welfare costs of unemployment caused by the opening of national economies should be included – as a result, the case for free trade weakens considerably, it could even vanish.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 50 - 62
Volume: 7
Issue: 1
Year: 2018
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/reassessing-marshalls-producers-surplus-a-case-for-protectionism/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2018/04/WEA-ET-7-1-Linotte.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:7:y:2018:i:1:p:50

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Arturo Hermann
Author-Email: ahermann@istat.it
Author-Workplace-Name: Italian National Institute of Statistics, Rome, Italy
Title: The Decline of the 'Original Institutional Economics' in the Post-World War II Period and the Perspectives of Today
Abstract: Original, or 'old', institutional economics (OIE) – also known as 'institutionalism' – played a key role in its early stages; it could be said that it was once the 'mainstream economics' of the time. This period ran approximately from the first important contributions of Thorstein Veblen in 1898 to the implementation of the New Deal in the early 1930s, where many institutionalists played a significant role. However, notwithstanding its promising scientific and institutional affirmation, institutional economics underwent a period of marked decline that spanned from the mid-1930s to the late 1980s, when a new season for institutional economics was set in motion. In order to cast some light on this complex issue – without any claim of completeness – we have organised the work as follows: in the first section we consider the main interpretations of this phenomenon. In the subsequent sections we analyse a number of 'endogenous' aspects which might have played a significant role in the period of decline: (i) the relations of institutional economics with Keynes's macroeconomic theory; (ii) the links between theoretical and empirical analysis and the supposed lack of a clear theory; (iii) the interdisciplinary orientation.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 63 - 86
Volume: 7
Issue: 1
Year: 2018
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-decline-of-the-original-institutional-economics-in-the-post-world-war-ii-period-and-the-perspectives-of-today/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2018/04/WEA-ET-7-1-Hermann.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:7:y:2018:i:1:p:63

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Anne Mayhew
Author-Email: amayhew@utk.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA
Title: Comments on Arturo Hermann's paper, 'The Decline of the “Original Institutional Economics”'
Abstract: Read Arturo Hermann's paper, 'The Decline of the "Original Institutional Economics" in the Post-World War II Period and the Perspectives of Today'
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 87 - 91
Volume: 7
Issue: 1
Year: 2018
Month: March
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/comments-on-arturo-hermanns-paper-the-decline-of-the-original-institutional-economics/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2018/04/WEA-ET-7-1-Mayhew.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:7:y:2018:i:1:p:87

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Dirk-Hinnerk Fischer
Author-Email: dirk-hinnerk.fischer@ttu.ee
Author-Workplace-Name: Ragnar Nurske School of Innovation and Governance Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia
Author-Name: Hovhannes Yeritsyan
Author-Email: hovhannes.yeritsyan@tamu.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Agricultural Economics, Texas A&M University, USA
Title: A Common Misunderstanding about Capitalism and Communism Through the Eyes of Innovation
Abstract: This paper argues that theories of communism and capitalism should not be considered as opposites or alternatives, but rather systems that satisfy different stages of humanity's technological development. The argument derives from Maslow's hierarchy of needs, and a focus on the role of innovation within systems. Some argue that capitalism focuses on the lower, and communism on the higher, layers of the hierarchy – which lays the basis for their inability to compete in different periods.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1 - 14
Volume: 7
Issue: 2
Year: 2018
Month: November
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/a-common-misunderstanding-about-capitalism-and-communism-through-the-eyes-of-innovation/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2018/11/WEA-ET-7-2-Fischer-Yeritsyan.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:7:y:2018:i:2:p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Stuart Holland
Author-Email: sholland@fe.uc.pt
Author-Workplace-Name: Faculty of Economics of the University of Coimbra, Portugal
Author-Name: Andrew Black
Author-Email: andrew.black@digitltd.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Faculty of Economics of Brunel University, UK
Title: Cherchez la Firme: Redressing the Missing – Meso – Middle in Mainstream Economics
Abstract: Aristotle warned against a 'missing middle' in logic (Gk Mesos – middle; intermediate). This paper submits that one of the reasons why there has been no major breakthrough in macroeconomics since the financial crisis of 2007-08 has been a missing middle in mainstream micro-macro syntheses, constrained by partial and general equilibrium premises. It maintains that transcending this needs recognition that large and dominant multinational corporations between small micro firms and macro outcomes – while also influencing both – merit the conceptual paradigm of mesoeconomics. Drawing on a range of uses of the concept, it relates this to reasons for 'too big to fail' and suggests implications for policies to gain accountability of big business, including how a meso dimension to input-output could yield transparency on risk-prone financial transactions by banks, and of corporations contributing to climate change. It also critiques misrepresentation of Walras and Pareto, as well as suggesting areas for research which could address, and potentially redress, 'missing middles' in mainstream micro-macro syntheses.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 15 - 53
Volume: 7
Issue: 2
Year: 2018
Month: November
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/cherchez-la-firme-redressing-the-missing-meso-middle-in-mainstream-economics/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2018/11/WEA-ET-7-2-Holland-Black.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:7:y:2018:i:2:p:15

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Christian Müller-Kademann
Author-Email: chri.mueller@jacobs-university.de
Author-Workplace-Name: Jacobs University Bremen, Department of Economics and Business Administration, Germany
Title: The Lucas Critique: A Lucas Critique
Abstract: The Lucas critique has been – and continues to be – the cornerstone of modern macroeconomic modelling. In this note we apply the Lucas critique to macroeconomic modelling using deep rational expectations. In conclusion, we point out that Lucas's critique reveals a fundamental flaw in Lucas's own, popular 'solution', i.e., the so-called forward-looking rational expectations models. Heeding Lucas's call for model-consistent policy advice eventually requires an ontological shift in economics – which throws the door wide open to an exciting, hardly-explored field of economic research.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 54 - 62
Volume: 7
Issue: 2
Year: 2018
Month: November
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-lucas-critique-a-lucas-critique/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2018/11/WEA-ET-7-2-Muller-Kademann.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:7:y:2018:i:2:p:54

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: David Orrell
Author-Email: dorrell@systemsforecasting.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Systems Forecasting, Toronto, Canada
Title: Quantum Economics
Abstract: A decade after the financial crisis, there is a growing consensus that the neoclassical approach to economics has failed, and that new approaches are needed. This paper argues that economics has been trying to solve the wrong problem. Economics sees itself as the science of scarcity, but instead it should be the science of money. Just as physicists' ideas about quantum matter were formed by studying the exchange of particles at the subatomic level, so economics should begin by analysing the properties of money-based transactions, which like quantum entities have a fundamentally dualistic nature. By building on ideas from quantum money, quantum finance and quantum social science, this paper shows that the economy is an archetypal example of a quantum social system, complete with its own versions of measurement uncertainty, entanglement, and so on. This leads to a proposal for a quantum economics, which is to neoclassical economics what quantum physics is to classical physics.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 63 - 81
Volume: 7
Issue: 2
Year: 2018
Month: November
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/quantum-economics/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2018/11/WEA-ET-7-2-Orrell.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:7:y:2018:i:2:p:63

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Timon Scheuer
Author-Email: timon.scheuer@outlook.de
Author-Workplace-Name: Graz Schumpeter Centre, University of Graz
Title: Computational Agents, Design and Innovative Behaviour: Hetero Economicus
Abstract: For too long, a majority of economic stories speak of perfectly informed, fully rational optimisation within a purely materialistic world – leaving a lack of evidence and explanation regarding human decision makers and entrepreneurs revolutionising the decision space. Strands like game theory and institutional economics have already adopted a more practical view. Evolutionary and behavioural economics were finally able to establish the necessary links to other disciplines – like psychology and informational science. This paper recaps selected parts of the literature that favour a conceptional view of computational agents. Firstly, we invite economic modellers to question the microfoundation of their assumptions with regard to the individual or to an aggregate level of human behaviour that they truly refer to. Secondly, we illustrate the potential, as well as the limitations, that computational agents exhibit – with regard to the incorporation of creativity as the main source of innovative behaviour. Thirdly, this rather superficial collection of ideas serves as a position paper for future approaches.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 82 - 96
Volume: 7
Issue: 2
Year: 2018
Month: November
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/computational-agents-design-and-innovative-behaviour-hetero-economicus/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2018/11/WEA-ET-7-2-Scheuer.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:7:y:2018:i:2:p:82

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Lynne Chester
Author-Email: lynne.chester@sydney.edu.au
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Political Economy, University of Sydney, Australia
Title: Judging Heterodox Economics: A Response to Hodgson's Criticisms
Abstract: The renowned institutionalist Geoffrey Hodgson has claimed inter alia that heterodox economics has failed to define its nature and scope, does not take pluralism seriously, and lacks expertise concentration to ensure quality which means it has made limited progress and is held in variable esteem. To address these alleged problems, Hodgson proposes four alternative strategies: the creation of heterodox economics academic departments; for heterodox economists to enter non-economics academic departments; for heterodox economists to 'organise' around a successful approach with future potential; or, to encourage the study of economic institutions by other social science disciplines or by using prominent mainstream techniques and approaches. A response to these criticisms and proposed strategies is warranted for several reasons. These criticisms are not trivial and, as an assemblage the import is much greater than a singular criticism. Hodgson is very influential within the economics discipline and he reiterates, in part, past criticisms from the mainstream as well as presenting his criticisms to a wide range of audiences. These criticisms intersect with longstanding debates within heterodox economics about the role of pluralism, the definition and project of heterodox economics, its relationship to the changing form of mainstream, and the merit of synthesis or convergence of different heterodox schools of economic thought. The suitability of mainstream measures to judge heterodox economics, and the relationship of ideology and economic theory, are also raised by these criticisms as well as the feasibility of proposed strategies to support heterodox economics within the academy. It is argued that several fallacious claims lead Hodgson to misconstrue the nature and evolution of heterodox economics, and inherent flaws in each of his proposed alternative strategies will further marginalise – not advance – the project of heterodox economics.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1 - 21
Volume: 8
Issue: 1
Year: 2019
Month: June
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/judging-heterodox-economics-a-response-to-hodgsons-criticisms/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/06/WEA-ET-8-1-Chester.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i:1:p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Geoffrey M Hodgson
Author-Email: g.m.hodgson@herts.ac.uk
Author-Workplace-Name: Loughborough University London
Title: The Meaning and Future of Heterodox Economics: A Response to Lynne Chester
Abstract: I have been writing and publishing in economics for 50 years and much of my work has been debated and criticised. But I think that this is the first time that someone has honoured me by a full-scale article criticising an unpublished working paper. I am very grateful to Lynne Chester for bringing the questions I raise to a wider audience. The working paper that she criticizes went through several versions, of which the 12 July 2017 draft that Lynne downloaded from the World Interdisciplinary Network for Institutional Research (WINIR) website is not the final version. In addition, the working paper has now expanded into a book entitled Is There a Future for Heterodox Economics? (Hodgson, 2019). Lynne's criticisms help me to attempt to make the text clearer and deal with some misunderstandings that have arisen...
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 22 - 29
Volume: 8
Issue: 1
Year: 2019
Month: June
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-meaning-and-future-of-heterodox-economics-a-response-to-lynne-chester/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/06/WEA-ET-8-1-Hodgson.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i:1:p:22

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Kevin Quinn
Author-Email: kquinn@bgsu.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Bowling Green State University, Ohio, USA
Title: Was Smith A Moral Subjectivist?
Abstract: This paper challenges the commonly held view that Smith's moral theory is a subjectivist theory. Smith's test for goodness and rightness – for propriety – is not the approbation of an impartial spectator, but the warranted approbation of such a spectator. Something is right or good not because an impartial spectator would approve of it, but because such a spectator would be warranted in so approving.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 30 - 39
Volume: 8
Issue: 1
Year: 2019
Month: June
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/was-smith-a-moral-subjectivist/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/06/WEA-ET-8-1-Quinn.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i:1:p:30

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Ron Wallace
Author-Email: ronald.wallace@ucf.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Anthropology, University of Central Florida, USA
Title: Addressing the Malaise in Neoclassical Economics: A Call for Partial Models
Abstract: Economics is currently experiencing a climate of uncertainty regarding the soundness of its theoretical framework and even its status as a science. Much of the criticism is within the discipline, and emphasises the alleged failure of the neoclassical viewpoint. This article proposes the deployment of partial modelling, utilising Boolean networks (BNs), as an inductive discovery procedure for the development of economic theory. The method is presented in detail and then linked to the Semantic View of Theories (SVT), closely identified with Bas van Fraassen and Patrick Suppes, in which models are construed as mediators creatively negotiating between theory and reality. It is suggested that this approach may be appropriate for economics and, by implication, for any science in which there is no consensus theory, and a wide range of viewpoints compete for acceptance.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 40 - 52
Volume: 8
Issue: 1
Year: 2019
Month: June
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/addressing-the-malaise-in-neoclassical-economics-a-call-for-partial-models/
File-Format: text/html
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/06/WEA-ET-8-1-Wallace.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i:1:p:40

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: David Orrell
Author-Email: dorrell@systemsforecasting.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Systems Forecasting, Toronto, Canada
Title: Commentary on 'Addressing the Malaise in Neoclassical Economics: A Call for Partial Models'
Abstract: The article by Ron Wallace 'proposes the deployment of partial modelling, utilising Boolean networks (BNs), as an inductive discovery procedure for the development of economic theory'. The central argument in favour of partial models is well-made, and while I agree with this aspect of the paper, and the conclusion that models should serve as 'cognitive instruments in a regime of exploration,' I have a number of comments about the proposed strategy and the example of BNs...
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 53 - 55
Volume: 8
Issue: 1
Year: 2019
Month: June
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/commentary-on-addressing-the-malaise-in-neoclassical-economics-a-call-for-partial-models/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/06/WEA-ET-8-1-Orrell.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i:1:p:53

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Juozas Kasputis
Author-Email: juozas.kasputis@iask.hu
Author-Workplace-Name: Institute of Advanced Studies Kőszeg (iASK), Polanyi Centre, Hungary
Title: Hierarchical Inconsistencies: A Critical Assessment of Justification
Abstract: The existential insecurity of human beings has induced them to create protective spheres of symbols: myths, religions, values, belief systems, theories, etc. Rationality is one of the key factors contributing to the construction of civilisation in technical and symbolic terms. As Hankiss (2001) has emphasised, protective spheres of symbols may collapse – thus causing a profound social crisis. Social and political transformations had a tremendous impact at the end of the 20th century. As a result, management theories have been revised in order to deal with transition and uncertainty. Francis Fukuyama's (2000) approach is supportive of hierarchical organisation as the best solution when facing a 'disruption'. The notion of Homo Hierarchicus has been based on, allegedly, rational presumptions. This paper contributes to the discussion on hierarchy within contemporary organisations. It criticises so-called 'natural' and 'rational' necessities justifying hierarchy. A key issue identified by the paper is the formalisation of language in claiming value-free knowledge and 'detached' observation as the basis for neutral rationality and aspired efficiency. This should be seriously reconsidered as hindering rather than aiding understanding of social complexity. All in all, Homo Hierarchicus appears to be misleading rather than helping symbolic sphere or construct.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1 - 12
Volume: 8
Issue:
Year: 2019
Month: December
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/hierarchical-inconsistencies-a-critical-assessment-of-justification/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/12/WEA-ET-8-2-Kasputis.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i::p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Ioannis A. Katselidis
Author-Email: ikatsel@aueb.gr
Author-Workplace-Name: Athens University of Economics and Business, Greece
Title: Institutions, Policy and the Labour Market: The Contribution of the Old Institutional Economics
Abstract: This paper seeks to examine the relationship and the interaction between institutions, policy and the labour market in the light of the ideas of the first generation of institutional economists, who, in contrast to neoclassicals, conceived of the economy as a nexus of institutions, underlining, therefore, the significant role of institutional and non-market factors in the functioning of an economic system. They also criticised those who define (economic) welfare only in terms of efficiency and satisfaction of consumer interests; institutionalists instead focus on issues related to justice, human self-development and labourers' welfare. In addition, early institutionalists paid considerable attention to the institutional framework of the labour market. In particular, the first generation of institutional economists highlighted the importance of institutions and other non-market parameters in determining the level of wages and employment (e.g. the role of the bargaining power of workers and employers). Furthermore, they made substantial contributions towards the field of labour policy and they were pioneers in the formulation of economic and social policy. Specifically, various modern institutions and labour market policies, such as unemployment benefits, industrial training and active employment policies, were implemented in the US, during the first decades of the 20th century, after the recommendation of the institutional labour economists. Therefore, their ideas, besides being interesting from a historical point of view, may also be useful in today's analysis of workers' problems and the functioning of modern labour markets.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 13 - 30
Volume: 8
Issue:
Year: 2019
Month: December
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/institutions-policy-and-the-labour-market-the-contribution-of-the-old-institutional-economics/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/12/WEA-ET-8-2-Katselidis.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i::p:13

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Richard Everett Planck
Author-Email: aanne@frontier.com
Author-Workplace-Name: The Association for the Advancement of non-Newtonian Economics (AAnNE)
Title: Orthogonal Time in Euclidean Three-Dimensional Space: Being an Engineer's Attempt to Reveal the Copernican Criticality of Alfred Marshall's Historically-ignored 'Cardboard Model'
Abstract: This paper begins by asking a simple question: can a farmer own and fully utilise precisely five tractors and precisely six tractors at the same time? Of course not. He can own five or he can own six but he cannot own five and six at the same. The answer to this simple question eventually led this author to Alfred Marshall's historically-ignored, linguistically-depicted 'cardboard model' where my goal was to construct a picture based on his written words. More precisely, in this paper the overall goal is to convert Marshall's ('three-dimensional') words into a three-dimensional picture so that the full import of his insight can be appreciated by all readers. After a brief digression necessary to introduce Euclidean three-dimensional space, plus a brief digression to illustrate the pictorial problem with extant theory, the paper turns to Marshall's historically- ignored words. Specifically, it slowly constructs a visual depiction of Marshall's 'cardboard model'. Unfortunately (for all purveyors of extant economic theory), this visual depiction suddenly opens the door to all manner of Copernican heresy. For example, it suddenly becomes obvious that we can join the lowest points on a firm's series of SRAC curves and thereby form its LRAC curve; it suddenly becomes obvious that the firm's series of SRAC curves only appear to intersect because mainstream theory has naively forced our three-dimensional economic reality into a two-dimensional economic sketch; and it suddenly becomes obvious that a two-dimensional sketch is analytically useless because the 'short run' (SR) never turns into the 'long run' (LR) no matter how long we wait.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 31 - 45
Volume: 8
Issue:
Year: 2019
Month: December
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/orthogonal-time-in-euclidean-three-dimensional-space-being-an-engineers-attempt-to-reveal-the-copernican-criticality-of-alfred-marshalls-historically-ignored-cardboard-mode/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/12/WEA-ET-8-2-Planck.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i::p:31

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Miguel D. Ramirez
Author-Email: Miguel.Ramirez@trincoll.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Trinity College, Hartford, CT USA
Title: Credit, Indebtedness and Speculation in Marx's Political Economy
Abstract: This paper contends that Marx develops in Volume III of Capital an incisive conceptual framework in which excessive credit creation, indebtedness and speculation play a critical and growing role in the reproduction of social capital on an extended basis; however, given the decentralised and anarchic nature of capitalist production, the credit system does so in a highly erratic and contradictory manner which only postpones the inevitable day of reckoning. The paper also highlights Marx's relatively neglected but highly important analysis of the separation of ownership from management in the advanced capitalism of his day, England, and its modern-day implications for excessive risk-taking and debt-fuelled speculation up until the eve of the crash. More importantly, the paper argues that in Volumes II and III, Marx implicitly connected the expanding role of credit (which he associated with the development of capitalism) to a significant reduction in the turnover period of capital, thereby boosting the rate of surplus-value, and countering in a highly erratic and contradictory manner, the fall in the rate of profit. The growing role of credit has been relatively ignored in the Marxian literature as an important counteracting factor to the law of the declining rate of profit. It is not mentioned at all by Marx in his famous Chapter XIV, Vol. III of Capital where he discusses other important counteracting forces to the falling rate of profit, nor by Engels (in this particular context) who edited both Volumes II and III.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 46 - 62
Volume: 8
Issue:
Year: 2019
Month: December
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/credit-indebtedness-and-speculation-in-marxs-political-economy/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/12/WEA-ET-8-2-Ramirez.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i::p:46

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Stavros Mavroudeas
Author-Email: smavro@uom.edu.g
Author-Workplace-Name: Department of Economics, University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki, Greece
Title: Comment on Miguel Ramirez's paper, 'Credit, Indebtedness and Speculation in Marx's Political Economy'
Abstract: Read Miguell Ramirez's original paper Credit, Indebtedness and Speculation in Marx's Political Economy
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 63 - 68
Volume: 8
Issue:
Year: 2019
Month: December
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/comment-on-miguel-ramirezs-paper-credit-indebtedness-and-speculation-in-marxs-political-economy/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/12/WEA-ET-8-2-Mavroudeas.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i::p:63

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Miguel D. Ramirez
Author-Email: Miguel.Ramirez@trincoll.edu
Author-Workplace-Name: Trinity College, Hartford, CT USA
Title: Response to Stavros Mavroudeas
Abstract: Read Miguell Ramirez's original paper Credit, Indebtedness and Speculation in Marx's Political Economy Read Stavros Mavroudeas' comment on Miguel Ramirez' paper Comment on Miguel Ramirez's paper, 'Credit, Indebtedness and Speculation in Marx's Political Economy'
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 70 - 72
Volume: 8
Issue:
Year: 2019
Month: December
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/response-to-stavros-mavroudeas/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2019/12/WEA-ET-8-2-Ramirez-Response.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:8:y:2019:i::p:70

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Giandomenica Becchio
Author-Email: giandomenica.becchio@unito.it
Author-Workplace-Name: University of Turin, Italy
Title: The Two Blades of Occam's Razor in Economics: Logical and Heuristic
Abstract: This paper is part of the general debate about the need to rethink economics as a human discipline using a heuristic to describe its object, about the need to explicitly reject the positivistic approach in neoclassical economics, and about the urgency to adopt a different methodology, grounded on a realistic set of initial assumptions able to cope with the complexity of the decision making process. The aim of this paper is to show the use of Occam's razor in the economic debate around realism in economic modelling. Occam's razor can be intended as a principle of logic that emphasises simplicity, or as a heuristic tool that emphasises parsimony. Neoclassical economists, such as Samuelson, have explicitly used Occam's razor as a logical principle to highlight the strict logic and simplicity of neoclassical economics; neoclassical models, however, are based on unrealistic assumptions. Some approaches of heterodox economics, au contraire, have used Occam's razor as a powerful heuristic tool to emphasise parsimony, building up models grounded on realistic initial assumptions and capable of embedding complexity into the general explanation of economic behaviour, as in Simon's bounded rationality (1955; 1957) and Hayek's notion of human rationality (1948; 1952; 1974) and cultural and social evolution (1967; 1978).
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 1 - 17
Volume: 9
Issue: 1
Year: 2020
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-two-blades-of-occams-razor-in-economics-logical-and-heuristic/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2020/07/WEA-ET-9.1-Becchio.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:9:y:2020:i:1:p:1

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Péter Cserne
Author-Email: peter.cserne@abdn.ac.uk
Author-Workplace-Name: University of Aberdeen, UK
Title: Wine and bottles. Some remarks on “The Two Blades of Occam's Razor in Economics: Logical and Heuristic” by Giandomenica Becchio
Abstract: Read Giandomenica Becchio's original paper “The Two Blades of Occam's Razor in Economics: Logical and Heuristic
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 18 - 23
Volume: 9
Issue: 1
Year: 2020
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/wine-and-bottles-some-remarks-on-the-two-blades-of-occams-razor-in-economics-logical-and-heuristic-by-giandomenica-becchio/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2020/07/WEA-ET-9.1-Cserne.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:9:y:2020:i:1:p:18

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Donald Gillies
Author-Email: donald.gillies@ucl.ac.uk
Author-Workplace-Name: University College London
Title: The Empirical Success of Keynesianism
Abstract: The main thesis of this paper is that the empirical success of Keynesianism shows it to be scientific. Keynesianism here refers not to a specific theory, but to a paradigm. It is argued that Kuhn's notion of paradigm can be applied to economics, but, in contrast to the natural sciences, in economics there are always competing paradigms. The principal ones in contemporary economics are the Neoclassical, Keynesian and Marxist. To investigate whether the Keynesian paradigm is scientific we need a criterion for the scientificity of a paradigm. The paper first considers one approach to this problem due to Kant, but this is rejected as incorrect and called 'the Kantian fallacy'. Another approach is then put forward: 'the empirical confirmation principle', and reasons are given for accepting this as correct. Using this principle, it is then argued that that Keynesianism is indeed scientific.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 24 - 43
Volume: 9
Issue: 1
Year: 2020
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-empirical-success-of-keynesianism/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2020/07/WEA-ET-9.1-Gillies.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:9:y:2020:i:1:p:24

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Rafael Galvão de Almeida
Author-Email: rga1605@gmail.com
Author-Workplace-Name: Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG)
Title: Comment on 'The Empirical Success of Keynesianism' by Donald Gillies
Abstract: Read Donald Gillies' original paper “The Empirical Success of Keynesianism”
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 44 - 47
Volume: 9
Issue: 1
Year: 2020
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/comment-on-the-empirical-success-of-keynesianism-by-donald-gillies/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2020/07/WEA-ET-9.1-Almeida.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:9:y:2020:i:1:p:44

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Arturo Hermann
Author-Email: ahermann@istat.it
Author-Workplace-Name: Italian National Institute of Statistics, Rome, Italy
Title: The Psychological Contributions of Pragmatism and of Original Institutional Economics and their Implications for Policy Action
Abstract: The aim of this work is to illustrate the psychological contributions of Pragmatism and of the Original Institutional Economics (also referred to as OIE or institutionalism), and their relevance for improving the process of social valuing and, as a consequence, the effectiveness of policy action. As a matter of fact, both institutionalist and pragmatist theories were well acquainted with various strands of psychology, and some of them also provided relevant contributions in this respect. Moreover, these theories reveal, along with various differences, significant complementarities, both between themselves and with important concepts of social psychology and psychoanalysis. The work will address the following aspects: (I) The main characteristics of pragmatist psychology with particular attention to their social implications. For space reasons, we will focus attention on the contributions of authors – John Dewey, William James and George Herbert Mead – more oriented to social sciences. (II) The psychological contributions of institutionalism. We will pay particular attention to Thorstein Veblen's theory of instincts and John Rogers Commons' theory of negotiational psychology. We highlight that these theories present, despite a number of differences, relevant complementarities.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 48 - 71
Volume: 9
Issue: 1
Year: 2020
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/the-psychological-contributions-of-pragmatism-and-of-original-institutional-economics-and-their-implications-for-policy-action/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2020/07/WEA-ET-9.1-Hermann.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:9:y:2020:i:1:p:48

Template-Type: ReDIF-Article 1.0
Author-Name: Vlassis Missos
Author-Email: vmissos@kepe.gr
Author-Workplace-Name: Center of Planning and Economic Research (KEPE), Greece
Title: Mathematical Analysis as a Source of Mainstream Economic Ideology
Abstract: The paper contends that neoclassical ideology stems, to a great extent, from mathematical analysis. It is suggested that mainstream economic thought can be comprehensively revisited if both histories of mathematical and economic thought are to be taken collaboratively into account. Ideology is understood as a 'social construction of reality' that prevents us from evaluating our own standpoint, and impedes us from realising our value judgments as well as our theories of society and nature. However, the mid-19th century's intellectual controversies about the validity of mathematical thought, truth and knowledge can procure new interesting insights concerning the ideological stance of the first marginalists. In this respect, the methodological categories of analysis and synthesis serve as the basis for the crucial distinction between old geometry and mathematical analysis, indicating that the discipline of mathematics has its own history of fundamentally unresolved disputes. Lastly, this may also shed some light on Alfred Marshall's peculiarly reluctant attitude towards the use of mathematical analysis in his work.
Journal: Economic Thought
Pages: 72 - 95
Volume: 9
Issue: 1
Year: 2020
Month: July
File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/papers/mathematical-analysis-as-a-source-of-mainstream-economic-ideology/
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File-URL: http://et.worldeconomicsassociation.org/files/2020/07/WEA-ET-9.1-Missos.pdf
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Handle: RePEc:wea:econth:v:9:y:2020:i:1:p:72