nep-hme New Economics Papers
on Heterodox Microeconomics
Issue of 2017‒06‒04
fourteen papers chosen by
Carlo D’Ippoliti
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. Policy and State in Complexity Economics By Elsner, Wolfram
  2. Mainstreams of Research on Institutional Change in the Multidimensional Viewpoint By Marek Piosik
  3. Objectives’ alignment between members and agricultural cooperatives By François Bareille; Florence Bonnet-Beaugrand; Sabine Duvaleix-Treguer
  4. Inequality as Lack of Co-operation in Economic Thought By Monica Hernandez
  5. Agent-based modelling. History, essence, future By Hanappi, Hardy
  6. Stabilizing an Unstable Complex Economy-On the limitations of simple rules By Isabelle Salle; Pascal Seppecher
  7. Trayectorias de mujeres: educación técnico-profesional y trabajo en México By Buquet Corleto, Ana Gabriela; Moreno, Hortensia
  8. The Economic Commission for Latin America (ECLA) was right: scale-free complex networks and core-periphery patterns in world trade By Gala, Paulo; Camargo, Jhean Steffan Martines de; Freitas, Elton
  9. Gravitation of market prices towards normal prices: some new results By Bellino, Enrico; Serrano, Franklin
  10. Input-Output Analysis of Deindustrialization and Outsourcing By Richard Kalis; Erika Stracova
  11. The Capital Gaps between Female and Male Entrepreneurs By Bracha Efroni
  12. The governance and ownership of significant euro-area banks By Nicolas Véron
  13. Desenvolvimento econômico, sofisticação produtiva e valor-trabalho By Pereira, Luiz C. Bresser
  14. Pension Funds in Chile: Bringing the State Back In By Anna Zabkowicz

  1. By: Elsner, Wolfram
    Abstract: Complexity economics has developed into a powerful empirical, theoretical, and computational research program in the last three decades, advancing more realistic economics. It converges with long-standing heterodox schools, and its theoretical and empirical findings are consistent with older heterodox research interests and predictions. Economic complexity is characterized by path-dependence, idiosyncrasies, some self-organization capacity, structural emergence, and certain statistical distributions in economic topologies and motions, as complex economic systems move between building order and phases of sudden disorder. In agent-based systems, underlying “intentionality” of agents includes improving their performance, reducing perceived complexity, and generating social institutions. Boosted by the financial crisis 2008ff., a surge to explore complexity-economics’ policy implications has emerged. This chapter will briefly review the literature on economic Complex Adaptive Systems (CAS) and derive implications for economic-policy interventions and the state to act upon socio-economic complexity. From an “evolution-of-cooperation” perspective, we exemplarily derive some more specific policy orientations, specified “framework-policy” or “interactive-policy” approaches, embedded in a conception that we call “new meritorics”. We consider some required structures and capacities that a modern effective state, capable of a strong and persistent, but learning and adapting “complexity policy”, should have.
    Keywords: Complex adaptive systems (CAS),complexity,economic policy,emergence,evolution,institutions,networks,self-organization,group size,state structure,qualification
    Date: 2017
  2. By: Marek Piosik (Poznan University of Economics and Business, Poland)
    Abstract: The role of institutions in the social and economic development is widely recognized in recent literature on economics of institutions. Economic history provides many examples of bad and good institutional structures, environments, and ways of organizing the social life and relationships between individuals, which is the main reason for institutions to arise. Simultaneously diversity of institutional solutions can be perceived as cultural wealth from which societies can choose in order to find proper instruments to solve various problems in different situations. The present paper is an attempt to review main areas of research into institutional changes and synthesize them into mainstreams, which are also described in the multi-faceted viewpoint to prove the complexity and broad scope that need to be tackled by institutional economists to investigate institutional changes. The article analyses literature on institutional change and several dozen dimensions of the research areas that have a significant impact on the discussion on the mechanisms and environments of evolution of institutions. The review of the mainstreams is divided into five identified basic groups. In the last section the multidimensional perspective of the research area of institutional changes is proposed as it helps to grasp many aspects that play the fundamental role in understanding the process of institutional change, which is an indispensable step towards a development of the general theory of institutional change.
    Keywords: institutions; institutional change; theory of institutional change; evolution of the institution
    JEL: B52 D02 O17 O43
    Date: 2017–05
  3. By: François Bareille; Florence Bonnet-Beaugrand; Sabine Duvaleix-Treguer
    Abstract: Members’ commitment lessens when agricultural cooperatives grow larger. Their organization becomes more complex and their membership more heterogeneous, which threatens their sustainability and leads them to implement specific mechanisms for collective decisions. We explore how the alignment of objectives between a multi-purpose cooperative and its members influences member commitment. We estimate a multinomial probit model on a cross-section sample of 3,205 members from a large agricultural cooperative in France. We assess the determinants of member commitment through four factors: the offer of new agricultural practices, the availability of outlets and supplies to members, the farm distance to the cooperative headquarters and the farm governance. We show that the adoption of new agricultural practices has a small but significant effect. The availability of outlets and supplies has the strongest effect on the economic involvement of the farmers. Other determinants, such as farm governance or geographical distance to the cooperative headquarters, also reinforce member commitment.
    Keywords: agricultural cooperatives, member commitment, farm innovation, economic involvement
    JEL: Q13 C35
    Date: 2017
  4. By: Monica Hernandez (Department of Economics, New School for Social Research)
    Abstract: This study is about the notion of co-operation by economic thinkers of the 19th century in the United Kingdom. It presents a comparison and contrast of their ideas as well as an analysis of the relationship between co-operation and economic and social inequality. Two approaches of such relationship are identified. First, an economic-centered view, found in Charles Babbage and William Stanley Jevons, where the benefits of co-operation are linked to profit sharing, the increase of productivity and the expansion of the economic system. Second, Robert Owen’s and John Stuart Mill’s ideas on co-operation, even though with different implications, are mainly socially-oriented. Here, it is possible to see a broader social concern that led them to suggest reforms that could have implications in terms of social (e.g., education and gender), and not only economic inequality. Marx’s analysis of co-operation does not belong to any of these approaches. In his view, under capitalism, the effect of some forms of co-operation may generate or reinforce inequality.
    Keywords: Co-operation, inequality, Robert Owen, Charles Babbage, William Stanley Jevons, John Stuart Mill, Karl Marx, profit sharing, co-operatives, associations
    JEL: B1 B19 B3 B30 D6 D63 J5 J50 J51 J52 J53 J54
    Date: 2017–05
  5. By: Hanappi, Hardy
    Abstract: The currently fashionable modelling tool agent-based simulation is characterized. The first part concerns the past. It presents a selection of the major intellectual roots from which this new tool emerged. It is important for social scientists, in particular for economists, to see that two relevant impacts came from neighbouring disciplines: biology and network theory. The second part concerns the present of ABM. It aims at highlighting the essential features which are characteristic for an agent-based model. Since there are currently several different opinions on this topic, the one presented here also includes some more epistemologically oriented ideas to support its plausibility. In particular the notion of emergence is scrutinized and extended. This part ends with a short recipe stating how to build an agent-based model. In the last part some ideas on the future of agent based modelling are presented. This part follows the sequence of syntax, semantics, and pragmatics. The syntactic challenges, like operators for pattern recognition, will be meat by a continuing variety of software packages and programming languages tailored to support ABM. The semantic aspect of future agent-based modelling hinges on the close relationship between the tool ABM and its object of investigation, e.g. evolutionary political economy. The need to model institutional change or communication processes will imply adaptive evolution of ABM. The pragmatics of future agent-based modelling are finally characterized as the most demanding – but also as the most influential – element that the new tool will bring about.
    Keywords: Agent-based modelling, economic simulation models
    JEL: B20 B41 C63
    Date: 2017–05–23
  6. By: Isabelle Salle (Utrecht University, School of Economics); Pascal Seppecher (Centre d'Economie de l'Université de Paris Nord (CEPN))
    Abstract: This paper analyzes a range of alternative specifications of the interest rate policy rule within a macroeconomic, stock-flow consistent, agent-based model. In this model, firms’ leverage strategies evolve under the selection pressure of market competition. The resulting process of collective adaptation generates endogenous booms and busts along credit cycles. As feedback loops on aggregate demand affect the goods and the labor markets, the real and the financial sides of the economy are closely interconnected. The baseline scenario is able to qualitatively reproduce a wide range of stylized facts, and to match quantitative orders of magnitude of the main economic indicators. We find that, despite the implementation of credit and balance sheet related prudential policies, the emerging dynamics feature strong instability. Targeting movements in the net worth of firms help dampen the credit cycles, and simultaneously reduce financial and macroeconomic volatility, but does not eliminate the occurrence of financial crises along with high costs in terms of unemployment.
    Keywords: Agent-based modeling, Credit cycles, Monetary and Macroprudential policies, Leaning against the wind
    JEL: C63 E03 E52
    Date: 2017–04
  7. By: Buquet Corleto, Ana Gabriela; Moreno, Hortensia
    Abstract: La educación técnico-profesional viene experimentado transformaciones sustantivas en la región, aunque con diferentes ritmos y grados de concreción en cada país. En las últimas décadas a la par que se asiste a una incorporación masiva de las mujeres al mercado de trabajo, se registra una tendencia creciente de la elección de carreras técnicas y, en consecuencia, un aumento de la matrícula en el nivel de formación media y superior. No obstante sus niveles de capacitación y habilidades, las mujeres siguen en desventaja de cara al acceso al trabajo, a las condiciones laborales y a las brechas salariales, sobre todo en aquellas áreas que aún preservan una identidad particularmente masculina. En este contexto, el estudio indaga sobre las coordenadas históricas y actuales de la educación técnica o tecnológica en México y su vinculación con el sector productivo. Desde un enfoque cualitativo, se analizan las trayectorias de mujeres egresadas de la educación técnica o tecnológica de diferentes generaciones, perfiles profesionales y situaciones laborales, poniendo de relieve los desafíos por delante, las barreras y estereotipos culturales que obstaculizan sus logros, las oportunidades que han generado en estos tránsitos, y los impactos en sus autonomías. A través del conocimiento producido sobre la situación de estas mujeres se espera contribuir al diseño de políticas públicas que coadyuven al acceso, permanencia y movilidad de las mujeres, tanto en la educación técnica como en el ámbito laboral, en condiciones de mayor igualdad.
    Date: 2017–05
  8. By: Gala, Paulo; Camargo, Jhean Steffan Martines de; Freitas, Elton
    Abstract: The main purpose of this paper is to apply big-data and scale-free complex network techniques to the study of world trade, with a specific focus on the investigation of ECLA and structuralist ideas. A secondary objective is to illustrate the potentialities of the use of the new science of complex networks in economics, in what has been recently referred to as an econophysics research agenda. We work with a trade network of 101 countries and 762 products (SITC-4) which generated 1,756,224 trade links in 2013. The empirical results based on network analysis and computational methods reported here point in the direction of what ECLA economists used to argue; countries with higher income per capita concentrate in producing and exporting manufactured and complex goods at the center of the trade network; countries with lower income per capita specialize in producing and exporting non-complex commodities at the network’s periphery.
    Date: 2017–03–13
  9. By: Bellino, Enrico; Serrano, Franklin
    Abstract: The gravitation process of market prices towards production prices is here presented by means of an analytical framework where the classical capital mobility principle is coupled with a determination of the deviation of market from normal (natural) prices which closely follows the description provided by Adam Smith: each period the level of the market price of a commodity will be higher (lower) than its production price if the quantity brought to the market falls short (exceeds) the level of effectual demand. This approach also simplifies the results with respect to those obtained in cross-dual literature. At the same time, anchoring market prices to effectual demands and quantities brought to the markets requires a careful study of the dynamics of the ‘dimensions’ along with that of the 'proportions' of the system. Three different versions of the model are thus proposed, to study the gravitation process: i) assuming a given level of aggregate employment; ii) assuming a sort of Say's law; iii) and on the basis of an explicit adjustment of actual outputs to effectual demands. All these cases describe dynamics in which market prices can converge asymptotically towards production prices.
    Keywords: Market prices, normal prices, Classical competition, gravitation, effectual demand
    JEL: B12 D20 E11 E30
    Date: 2017–05–22
  10. By: Richard Kalis (Department of Economic Policy); Erika Stracova
    Abstract: The paper deals with the topic of deindustrialization as a process of a decreasing relative importance of manufacturing. While the decrease of manufacturing in major developed and developed economies is undeniable, the developing and newly industrialized economies are starting to experience this phenomenon as well. The results of the paper show that the so-called premature deindustrialization is mainly caused by outsourcing. Furthermore, the data suggest the existence of an upper limit of outsourcing for major developed economies. In these economies, the decrease of manufacturing is more likely caused by other relevant factors. Last but not least, a few transition economies face to a slightly decreasing value of outsourcing on a much lower level. This could be explained by a fragmentation of the entire value chain across the European Union. The empirical results are based on the Input-Output methodology, the observation period of fifteen years from 2000 to 2014 and a sample of 43 countries.
    Keywords: input-output analysis, deindustrialization, outsourcing
    JEL: C67 L60
    Date: 2017–04–03
  11. By: Bracha Efroni (Poznan University of Economics and Business)
    Abstract: Research background: Today countries have realized the importance ofsmall and medium enterprises (SMEs) to economic and social development. Entrepreneurship currently provides the most critical source of economic growth for countries. In most countries women own about 30% of small businesses. Since small businesses are the pillar of the economy, entrepreneurship is its growth engine, and women constitute about 50% of the population, it is important to research businesses and entrepreneurship among women so as to strengthen the economy. Women who decide to engage in entrepreneurship encounter many challenges, during both the establishment and management of the venture. Some of these challenges are shared by both male and female entrepreneurs, while some are relevant only to women. Purpose of the article: Since female entrepreneurship is extremely vital to a country’s economy, entrepreneurship among women must be encouraged. To do this, it is first necessary to understand the gaps between male and female entrepreneurs. Such gaps can only be reduced bycontinuing to research their origin and how they can be decreased. Methodology/methods: This article is based on literary research focusing on the differences between male and female entrepreneurship. Nearly one hundred articles, reports, and books were reviewed. The study results were synthesized on the basis of 40 works. Findings & Value added: Three main types of entrepreneurial gaps were found between women and men: social capital, financing capital, and human capital. The gender gap in entrepreneurship is explained in women’s structural disadvantages regarding the achievement of the resources relevant to the success of the business.
    Keywords: female entrepreneurship; gender gap; human capital; financing capital; social capital
    JEL: L26 J16
    Date: 2017–05
  12. By: Nicolas Véron
    Abstract: The banking crisis in the euro area, which started in mid-2007 and has yet to be fully resolved, has sparked considerable debate and reform, most notably the initiation of banking union starting in mid-2012. But one issue that has been largely overlooked in the debate is the peculiar ownership and governance structures of euro-area banks. European policymakers and analysts often appear to assume that most banks are publicly listed companies with ownership scattered among many institutional investors (‘dispersed ownership’), a structure in which no single shareholder has a controlling influence and that allows for considerable flexibility to raise capital when needed (‘capital flexibility’). This Policy Contribution shows, however, that listed banks with dispersed ownership are the exception rather than the rule among the euro area’s significant banks , especially if one looks beyond the very largest banking groups.
    Date: 2017–05
  13. By: Pereira, Luiz C. Bresser
    Abstract: In this paper, I discuss the historical (not the normative) concept of economic development, distinguish it from human development, reassert its identification with industrialization or structural change or productive sophistication, and argue that the distinction between development and growth is only necessary in cases of Dutch disease and predatory state in which the fruits of growth can be fully captured by the local oligarchy and foreign interests. In developing countries productive sophistication and productivity growth may be better explained by the transfer of workers and technicians to the more sophisticated sectors than by the increasing returns that are more relevant to rich countries. Although economic development does not imply a reduction of inequalities, it implies an increase in real wages to facilitate the equilibrium between supply and aggregate demand; because wages can grow around increasing productivity without making the rate of profit unsatisfactory; and because the remuneration of people ultimately corresponds to their labor value – their cost of reproduction.
    Date: 2017–03–29
  14. By: Anna Zabkowicz (Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland)
    Abstract: The privatized and capitalized old-age insurance in Chile has recently witnessed reforms under President Bachelet which extended the social safety net as well as re-introduced publicly-administered programs on behalf of retirees. The article reviews the performance of the system up to the most recent reform and presents results of pension engineering in a systematic way in attempt to estimate the scope of change. The method relies on orderly analysis which is founded on review of the literature relevant to the subject. Bringing the state back into Chile's pension system can be viewed as a plan to subsidize total retirement benefits in order to improve the distressing rates of replacement and, in such indirect way, to support the longevity of privately-managed pension funds.
    Keywords: the political economy of pension reforms - funded pensions - solidarity benefits
    JEL: P16 B52
    Date: 2017–05

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