nep-hme New Economics Papers
on Heterodox Microeconomics
Issue of 2015‒08‒30
thirteen papers chosen by
Carlo D’Ippoliti
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. Micro Processes and Isomorphic Adaptation: Insights from the Struggle for the Soul of Economics at the University of the Holy Spirit By Hamid Bouchikhi; John R. Kimberly
  2. Credit, Indebtedness, and Speculation in the Marxian Paradigm: A Reassessment By Ramirez, Miguel D.
  3. F. A. Hayek and the economic calculus By Bruce Caldwell
  4. Sraffa and ecological economics: review of the literature By Yoann Verger
  5. Essay on the problem of power in organizations : a Nietzschean and Hegelian approach to power . By Yolande Francois
  6. 'Women can do what men can do': the causes and consequences of flexibility in gender divisions of labour in Kitwe, Zambia By Alice Evans
  7. Développement humain responsable et aménagement du territoire. Réflexions à partir de deux réserves de biosphère périurbaines en France et au Chili By Pelenc, Jérôme
  8. What is a Complex Innovation System? By J. Sylvan Katz
  9. Religious organisations as investors: a Christian perspective on shareholder engagement By Katinka C. Van Cranenburgh; Daniel Arenas; Jennifer Goodman; Céline Louche
  10. On the Need for a Replication Journal By Zimmermann, Christian
  11. Publish... and Perish! By Sylvie Chevrier
  12. Représentations sociales de la monnaie : contraste entre les citoyens et les porteurs de monnaies locales By Ariane Tichit
  13. Problèmes philosophiques posés par l’« économie de la connaissance » By Claude Roche

  1. By: Hamid Bouchikhi (Accounting / Management Control Department - Essec Business School); John R. Kimberly (University of Pennsylvania [Philadelphia])
    Abstract: As of July 1, 2010, the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of the Holy Spirit (UHS) has a single Department of Economics. However, in the seven prior years, there were two economics departments, one that was resolutely mainstream and the other that was just as resolutely heterodox. What accounts for this unusual organizational arrangement? We show that this arrangement was part of a protracted conflict about the kind of economics that befits the Catholic identity of UHS that resulted, ultimately, in a full embrace of mainstream economics in July 2010. We draw on and amend Oliver's (1991) typology of organizational responses to institutional processes and investigate why and how UHS went from deliberate avoidance to full acquiescence to mainstream economics. Our analysis suggests that while organizations may be compelled to adapt to dominant norms, as institutional theorists contend, the process of adaptation involves a variety of conflicting moves and counter moves that engage identity and power and that require forceful leadership to resolve.
    Date: 2014
  2. By: Ramirez, Miguel D. (Trinity College)
    Abstract: This paper argues that, in Chapters XXIX and XXX of Volume III of Capital, Marx develops 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 decentralized and anarchic nature of capitalist production, it does so in a highly erratic and contradictory manner which only postpones the inevitable day of reckoning. The paper also draws important parallels between Marx's analysis of debt-fuelled crises and the events leading up to the subprime debacle of 2007-08. Finally, the paper contends that had Marx lived to re-write Vols. II and III, he would have explicitly 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 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 Chp. XIV, Vol. III of Capital where he discusses other important counteracting forces, nor by Engels [in this particular context] who edited both Vols. II and III.
    JEL: B10 B14 B24
    Date: 2014–07
  3. By: Bruce Caldwell
    Abstract: The paper offers a revisionist account of certain episodes in the development of F. A. Hayek's thought. It offers a new reading of his 1937 paper, "Economics and Knowledge," that draws on unpublished lecture notes in which he articulated more fully the distinctions he made in the paper between a "pure logic of choice," or the economic calculus, and an "empirical element," which he would later call the competitive market order. Next, the paper shows that Hayek continued to try to develop his ideas about the role of the economic calculus through the 1950s and early 1960s, an effort that has been missed because it never led to any published work. Finally, the paper examines Hayek's attempt to articulate a theory of the market process, one that would be at the same level of generality as the economic calculus, in lectures he gave at the University of Virginia. He never developed a full-fledged formal theory, but his failed efforts still bore fruit in leading him to his contributions on spontaneous orders and the (verbal) theory of complex phenomena. This work anticipated contributions by others who were more technically trained.
    Keywords: F. A. Hayek; the economic calculus; market process; the pure logic of choice; the structure of economic theory; spontaneous orders
    JEL: B25 B31 B53
    Date: 2015
  4. By: Yoann Verger (REEDS - REEDS - Centre international de Recherches en Economie écologique, Eco-innovation et ingénierie du Développement Soutenable - UVSQ - Université Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines)
    Abstract: References to Sraffa and to the neo-Ricardian school is something quite customary in ecological economics. By looking at contributions in this area since the beginning of ecological economics and at contributions on environmental problem from the neo-Ricardian school, we see that a connection between both school still has to be made. This connection should be articulated around the initial aim of Sraffa: to develop a new paradigm, competing against the neoclassical one. Only then it will be possible to develop a real eco-Sraffian approach able to pursue the analysis of the sustainability of the economic system. This review of the literature is divided in three sections. Section 1 describes the part of the literature engaged in the “valuation of nature” debate; section 2 the works of researchers trying to develop a neo-Ricardian approach of ecological conflicts; and section 3 several works trying to use the neo-Ricardian knowledge in the analysis of physical interdependence between processes, in particular for the assessment of CO2 emissions. In each of these last sections, works are presented in a (more or less) chronological way.
    Date: 2015–07–31
  5. By: Yolande Francois (Centre de Recherche Magellan - Université Jean Moulin - Lyon III - Institut d'Administration des Entreprises (IAE) - Lyon)
    Abstract: This communication suggests wondering about the power but more exactly about the power as the problem. Because before wondering about the contents of the power, we have to wonder about the fact of the existence of the power, about this need at the man of this behavior. Is it a refuge, a means to face its existence ? In an ideal system of governance, this variable has to exist. But why ? In the style of Nietzche, could-we it wonder ? Why, according to Hegel, the man is he a powerman ? Keys words : Power, organization, power of masters, power of the slaves, Organisational Behaviour.
    Abstract: Cet article interroge le phénomène du pouvoir organisationnel et plus précisément le pouvoir comme problème. Car avant de s'interroger sur le contenu du pouvoir dans les organisations et de son impact sur leur comportement, nous devons nous interroger sur le fait de l'existence du pouvoir, sur ce besoin chez l'homme de ce comportement. Est-ce un refuge, un moyen de faire face à son existence même ? Dans un système idéal de gouvernance organisationnelle, cette variable doit exister. Mais pourquoi ? A la manière de Nietzche, pourrions – nous nous le demander ? Pourquoi, selon Hegel, l'homme est-il un puissant ? Mots clés : pouvoir, organisation, pouvoir des dirigeants, pouvoir des dirigés, comportement organisationnel.
    Date: 2015–07–01
  6. By: Alice Evans
    Abstract: Economic insecurity has catalysed growing flexibility in gender divisions of labour in Kitwe, Zambia. People's resulting exposure to, as well as collective reflection about, a critical mass of women performing work that was previously presumed to be beyond their capabilities, and valorised because of its association with masculinity, appears to erode gender stereotypes relating to competence and status. It is this weakening of gender beliefs, rather than women's increased access to resources per se, that appears to have directly undermined gender-status inequalities. This article's portrayal of growing gender egalitarianism contrasts with (though does not dispute the empirical claims of) earlier accounts of economic crisis in Zambia, which emphasised women's increased burdens. Some domains, such as unpaid care work, continue to be marked by persistent inequalities; however, drawing on ethnographic research (comprising life history narratives, group interviews and observation), it is argued that this is not necessarily an indicator of women's low status generally.
    JEL: R14 J01
    Date: 2014
  7. By: Pelenc, Jérôme
    Abstract: In twenty-five years, sustainable development has not delivered the expected outcomes in terms of structural and institutional changes as well as scientific changes. Regarding scientific changes, since the first introduction of the concept of sustainable development by the Brundtland commission in 1987, new scientific fields of interdisciplinary reasearch in social sciences have emerged producing new conceptual tools, proposing new methodologies and asserting certain ethical principles. From the one hand, the thesis is interested in the field of Human Development which is structured around the work of Amartya Sen (the Capability Approach) and Manfred Max-Neef (the Fundamental Needs approach). On the other hand, the thesis is interested in the field of Ecological Economics from which emerges a strong conception of sustainability as well as the concepts of ecosystem functions and services. The thesis aims to establish a link between these two fields of research to shift from sustainable development, a relatively ambiguous concept, to responsible human development clearly rooted in strong sustainability and social justice. This articulation is carried out in a transdisciplinary perspective. In the first place, this articulation enables to provide a sound conceptual framework that could help to strengthen the epistemology of geography for studying Nature-Society interactions. In addition, this articulation could help to promote a responsible land planning. This new conceptual framework is tested in two peri-urban biosphere reserves in France (Biosphere Reserve Fontainebleau -Gâtinais ) and Chile (Biosphere Reserve La Campana - Peñuelas).
    Keywords: sustainable development; human development; ecological economics; capability approach; ecosystem services; land use planning
    JEL: Q01 Q57
    Date: 2014–04–09
  8. By: J. Sylvan Katz (SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit, University of Sussex, Falmer, Brighton, UK)
    Abstract: Innovation systems are frequently referred to as complex systems, something that is intuitively understood but poorly defined. A complex system dynamically evolves in non-linear ways giving it unique properties that distinguish it from other systems. In particular, a common signature of complex systems is scale-invariant emergent properties. A scale- invariant property can be identified because it is solely described by a power law function, f(x) = kxa where the exponent, a, is a measure of the scale-invariance. The purpose of this paper is to describe and illustrate that innovation systems have properties of a complex adaptive system and in particular scale-invariant emergent properties indicative of their complex nature. These properties can be quantified and used to inform public policy. The global research system is an example of an innovation system. Peer-reviewed publications containing knowledge are a characteristic output. And citations or references to these articles are an indirect measure of the impact the knowledge has on the research community. These measures are used to illustrate how scale-invariant properties can be identified and quantified. Peer-reviewed papers indexed in Scopus and in the Web of Science were used as the data sources to produce measures of sizes and impact. Papers indexed in Scopus were classified into fields using the Scopus, NSF and MAPS schemes. The evolution of the overall and field level impact distributions were examined to see if they had a reasonable likelihood of being scale-invariant as they aged. Also, correlations between impact and size were explored to see if they were scale-invariant too. The findings show that the distribution of impact has a reasonable likelihood of being scale-invariant with scaling exponents that tended toward a value of less than 3.0 with the passage of time. Scale-invariant correlations are shown to exist between the evolution of impact and size with time and between field impact and sizes at points in time. However, it was found that care must be exercised making these measures as the method of classification may hide emerging properties. The confirmation that an innovation has common characteristics of an adaptive complex system and scale-invariant emergent properties allows us to confidently say that the global research system has a reasonable likelihood of being a complex innovation system. And using the recursive nature of scale-invariance it is reasonable to assume that regional, national, local and sectoral level systems contained within it are complex with scale- invariant properties too. Measures and models based on the scale-invariant properties of complex innovation systems can provide new and novel insights about an innovation system useful for informing public policy.
    Keywords: innovation system; scale-invariant; scale-free; complex system; complex adaptive system; power law; innovation policy; bibliometric; scientometric
    Date: 2015–07
  9. By: Katinka C. Van Cranenburgh (ESADE Business School); Daniel Arenas (ESADE Business School); Jennifer Goodman (ESADE Business School); Céline Louche (Audencia Recherche - Audencia)
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to deepen the discussion about religious organisations’ (ROs) potential to practise their faith by means of their investments, rather than keeping both issues separate. The authors adopted a qualitative exploratory approach using seven cases of social shareholder engagement (SSE) by Christian organisations. It focused on creating knowledge from best practices. Within the three Christian organisations studied, the authors identified three significant features that relate to their religious nature and affect their SSE: having a structured belief system, a grassroots network and a long-term perspective. These features can be instrumental in impacting company behaviour and society at large. The authors chose three ROs for their relevance and comparative features, but this limited sample size makes it hard to generalise the research findings. This paper invites ROs to review their potential for actively owning their shares to be consistent with their faith and create change in business and society at large. Besides, ROs, with their unwavering belief system, extensive grassroots networks and long-term approach, are a force in the shareholder engagement field to be reckoned with by business. The paper presents multi cases of ROs active in using their investments to create change in companies and society at large.
    Date: 2014
  10. By: Zimmermann, Christian (Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis)
    Abstract: There is very little replication of research in economics, particularly compared with other sciences. This paper argues that there is a dire need for studies that replicate research, that their scarcity is due to poor or negative rewards for replicators, and that this could be improved with a journal that exclusively publishes replication studies. I then discuss how such a journal could be organized, in particular in the face of some negative rewards some replication studies may elicit.
    JEL: A1 B4
    Date: 2015–08–07
  11. By: Sylvie Chevrier (IRG - Institut de Recherche en Gestion - UPEC UP12 - Université Paris-Est Créteil Val-de-Marne - Paris 12 - UPEM - Université Paris-Est Marne-la-Vallée)
    Abstract: Does Academia's obsession with publishing in journals with the widest renown help the science of management advance? On the contrary, evaluating research by the number of highly cited publications estranges those who publish from research itself! Forms of research are defended herein that are closer to the subject of the study. Although they will not necessarily find a place as articles formatted for star journals, they allow for more innovation and creativity.
    Abstract: L'obsession du monde académique pour la rédaction d'articles dans les revues les mieux cotées fait-elle vraiment avancer les sciences de gestion? Nous soutenons au contraire que l'évaluation de la recherche à l'aune du nombre des "étoiles" des publications éloigne les "publiants" de la recherche! Nos défendrons dans cet article des formes de recherche plus proches des objets étudiés, des formes de recherche qui ne trouvent pas nécessairement leur place dans des articles formatés des revues, mais qui permettent davantage d'innovations et de créativité.
    Date: 2014–03
  12. By: Ariane Tichit (CERDI - Centre d'études et de recherches sur le developpement international - CNRS - Université d'Auvergne - Clermont-Ferrand I)
    Abstract: This article analyzes the social representations of money from survey data. More specifically, it tests how holders of a complementary currency project have a distinct perception of money compared to other citizens. The main results confirm the existence of significant differences between the two groups. The structure of their representations shows that money is less tied to official institutions, the symbol of the sovereign State, to work and wages than for the representative population group. This confirms a number of theoretical works that see these social innovations as protest projects of the standard system, questioning the sovereignty State currency and close to the concepts of unconditional income. Local currencies, by differences in social representations they contain, could well be generators of societal change.
    Date: 2015–07–21
  13. By: Claude Roche (LIP - Laboratoire d'innovation pédagogique - Université Catholique de Lille)
    Abstract: Notre objet est de caractériser certaines des mutations induites par ce qu’on appelle « l’économie de la connaissance». Nous partons de l’idée que nos économies évoluent fortement car le travail devient massivement intellectuel et cela touche, pensons-nous la nature même des connaissances produites en entreprise, ainsi que le mode de leur gouvernance. Ces mutations sont mal comprises des économistes, pour des raisons méthodologiques. En effet le travail intellectuel est fondamentalement immesurable – son efficacité renvoie à sa seule pertinence - alors que la mesurabilité est un présupposé des principales théories. Nous appuyant sur Kant, nous montrerons qu’il s’agit d’une aporie majeure, qui atteint jusqu’au projet d’une science économique (toute science pour Kant, procède par délimitation préalable de son objet, et donc présuppose la mesurabilité). Contre l’illusion scientifique, nous poserons que cette économie doit être interrogée de deux points de vue spécifiques, épistémologique et managérial : avec deux résultats La mutation de la nature de la connaissance Pour la littérature spécialisée (Foray), la connaissance est un « en-soi » défini extérieurement au monde économique. C’est une erreur, et nous poserons que, du fait de la complexité des objets, y apparaissent des modes spécifiques de connaître : à la fois collectifs et transdisciplinaires (Schmid). Tel est le cas de la conception innovante, du design thinking et du codesign dans le développement duquel nous sommes impliqués. Nous décrirons ces pratiques en détail insistant notamment sur ce que l’ancrage économique fonctionne comme une contrainte d’objectivation. Nous poserons alors l’hypothèse qu’elles peuvent dépasser les apories de la connaissance éclatée considérées comme caractéristiques de la « post-modernité»(Lyotard) Il s’agira alors de qualifier économiquement ces pratiques ; et le ferons de façon réflexive à partir de l’expérience récente du management Une tension entre efficacité opérationnelle et pilotage financier La caractéristique de cette économie est qu’elle génère une tension entre deux logiques de gouvernance de l’entreprise : l’efficacité opérationnelle et la rationalité gestionnaire. Celle-ci domine toujours, mais elle échoue à saisir l’efficacité de la connaissance car ses notions centrales - ressource, capital - sont par essence privatives, là où une connaissance privatisée devient inopérante. Stricto-sensu, elle n’est qu’une ressource répartie (un pseudo-capital pour Llerana). Nous montrerons par contre que le management s’est adapté à cette réalité ; nous le ferons en réinterprétant les doctrines managériales récentes. Nous décrirons alors cette tension par des exemples vécus, montrant qu’elle peut conduire à un dialogue de pilotage, au sens de Lorino, opposant le principe financier à celui de l’efficacité du travail intellectuel. Jusqu’où peut aller ce dialogue ? Jusqu’à intégrer des intérêts extérieurs à l’entreprise ? La logique le voudrait. Car le propre du connaitre est d’englober les enjeux de son contexte. Cela s’observe d’ailleurs dans certains dispositifs « d’open innovation » souvent sensibles aux questions de développement durable (Von Hippel). Nous ne pourrons cependant en juger de façon fiable. Cette contribution n’ayant de sens que de montrer les conditions d’une telle interrogation
    Date: 2014–10–09

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