nep-hme New Economics Papers
on Heterodox Microeconomics
Issue of 2018‒12‒24
thirteen papers chosen by
Carlo D’Ippoliti
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. CasP's 'Differential Accumulation' versus Veblen's 'Differential Advantage' By Bichler, Shimshon; Nitzan, Jonathan
  2. Ludwik Fleck's philosophy and sociology of science and the resilience of modern neoclassical economics: A case study By Heise, Arne
  3. Work-Family Reconciliation Policies And Women’s And Mothers’labor Market Outcomes In Rich Democracies By David Brady; Agnes Blome; Julie A. Kmec
  4. Perceived Fairness in the Taxation of a Digital Business Model By Greil, Stefan; Schwarz, Christian; Stein, Stefan
  5. Norm making and institutions dynamics: how the research program of the French Régulation Theory can be fertilized by the methodological concepts from the “Max-Planck-Institute for European Legal History” By Samuel Klebaner
  6. How do working life and its interplay with family structures affect men’s and women’s gender role attitudes? By Mays, Anja
  7. Reforming Undergraduate Economics Education in India: A Case for Inter-disciplinarity By George, Justine
  8. A non-linear post-Keynesian Goodwin-type endogenous model of the cycle for the USA By Konstantakis, Konstantinos N.; Michaelides, Panayotis G.; Mariolis, Theodore
  9. Offrir des biens publics et des communs et revitaliser l’action publique dans le cadre d’un processus de « destruction créatrice » By Philippe BANCE
  10. A characterization of lexicographic preferences By Goswami, Mridu Prabal; Mitra, Manipushpak; Sen, Debapriya
  11. The neutrality illusion: biased economics, biased training, and biased monetary policy. Testing the role of ideology on FOMC voting behaviour By Lepers, Etienne
  12. The Billion Dollar Question: How Much Will it Cost to Decarbonise Cities’ Transport Systems? By Nicolas Wagner
  13. La apropiación de internet en adultos mayores: desafíos planteados por las economías informales en dos ciudades de América Latina By Roxana Barrantes; Daniela Ugarte

  1. By: Bichler, Shimshon; Nitzan, Jonathan
    Abstract: This paper clarifies a common misrepresentation of our theory of capital as power, or CasP. Many observers tend to box CasP as an "institutionalist" theory, tracing its central process of "differential accumulation" to Thorstein Veblen's notion of "differential advantage". This view, we argue, betrays a misunderstanding of CasP, Veblen or both. As we show, CasP's notion of differential accumulation is not only different from, but also diametrically opposed to Veblen's differential advantage. Veblen, who wrote at the turn of the twentieth century, before the appearance of business indices and financial benchmarks, emphasized the absolute drive for "maximum profit" and saw strategic sabotage merely as a power means to an economic end. By contrast, CasP, which was developed at the end of the twentieth century, sees power not only as a means of accumulation, but also - and perhaps more importantly - as its ultimate purpose. Accumulators, it argues, are conditioned and driven to augment not their profits and assets as such, but their relative power, and this means that, as symbolic bearers of power, these profits and assets should be measured not absolutely, but relatively to those of others - hence the imperative of differential accumulation.
    Keywords: capital as power,differential advantage,differential accumulation,Thorstein Veblen
    Date: 2018
  2. By: Heise, Arne
    Abstract: [Introduction] Ludwik Fleck’s contribution to the sociology and philosophy of science has gone almost unnoticed to the present day (see Sady 2017). Although his ideas about the development of scientific knowledge as a collective effort organised in ‘thought collectives’ (‘Denkkollektive’) based on shared ‘thought styles’ (‘Denkstile’) may have been elaborated and honed in Thomas S. Kuhn’s works on scientific revolutions and paradigm shifts and those of Imre Lakatos on scientific research programs (srp), Fleck’s work is still insightful beyond Kuhn’s and Lakatos’ contributions, not so much with respect to what triggers scientific progress but rather what impedes the correction of scientific deceptions. While Kuhn and Lakatos built on the rationality of the scientific community not to follow paradigmatic lines or adhere to scientific research programs defeated by empirical falsification or the proof of logical inconsistency or having entered the ‘state of degeneration’, Fleck was more concerned with the sociological forces that explain the resilience of ideas and what today we would call ‘fake knowledge’ even in the face of mounting evidence that does not fit the established wisdom. In the following, Fleck’s philosophy and sociology of science will be briefly outlined in order to establish a ‘theory of the resilience of scientific misapprehension’. This theory will be tested against the development of modern neoclassical economics by singling out a case of extreme deviation of theoretical prediction from empirical evidence: minimum wages’ impact on employment.
    Date: 2018
  3. By: David Brady; Agnes Blome; Julie A. Kmec
    Abstract: Prominent research has claimed that work-family reconciliation policies trigger “tradeoffs” and “paradoxes” in terms of gender equality with adverse labor market consequences for women. These claims have greatly influenced debates regarding social policy, work, family, and gender inequality. Motivated by limitations of prior research, we analyze the relationship between the two most prominent work-family reconciliation policies (paid parental leave and public childcare coverage) and seven labor market outcomes (employment, full-time employment, earnings, fulltime earnings, being a manager, being a lucrative manager, and occupation percent female). We estimate multi-level models of individuals nested in a cross-section of 21 rich democracies near 2005, and two-way fixed effects models of individuals nested in a panel of 12 rich democracies over time. The vast majority of coefficients for work-family policies fail to reject the null hypothesis of no effects. The pattern of insignificance occurs regardless of which set of models or coefficients one compares. Moreover, there is as much evidence that significantly contradicts the “tradeoff hypothesis” as is consistent with the hypothesis. Altogether, the analyses undermine claims that work-family reconciliation policies trigger tradeoffs and paradoxes in terms of gender equality with adverse labor market consequences for women.
    JEL: H I
    Date: 2018–12
  4. By: Greil, Stefan (University of Hamburg); Schwarz, Christian (Department of Economics of the Duesseldorf University of Applied Sciences); Stein, Stefan (Quantum Steuerberatungsgesellschaft mbH)
    Abstract: The “fair” taxation of digital business models is challenging. One of the key aspects – both policy makers and the public opinion consider as most pressuring – is the determination of intragroup transfer prices for intangibles used in digital business models. In this paper, we address the issue of a “perceived fair” taxation of the digital economy in the light of the arm’s length principle based on a survey with transfer pricing experts. The aim of the survey is not to estimate arm’s length profit allocations but rather to elicit fairness considerations in different transfer pricing related scenarios. In a digital economy framework where arm’s length profits are distributed extremely inequitably, subjects perceive this distribution of profits as most unfair compared to more balanced scenarios. Consequently, subjects propose a “fair” distribution of profits that substantially differs from the exogenously given arm’s length allocation. In scenarios with a more balanced arm’s length allocation of profits, we find that the perceived fairness for the expert groups increases while a control group of business students is almost not influenced by the arm’s length allocation of profits.
    Abstract: Die „faire“ Besteuerung digitaler Geschäftsmodelle ist herausfordernd. Einer der Schlüsselaspekte ist dabei die Ermittlung konzerninterner fremdvergleichskonformer Verrechnungspreise für immaterielle Vermögenswerte, die verstärkt in digitalen Geschäftsmodellen genutzt werden. Dieser Beitrag beschäftigt sich mit der „wahrgenommenen“ Fairness bei der Besteuerung digitaler Geschäftsmodelle vor dem Hintergrund des Fremdvergleichsgrundsatz. Grundlage hierfür ist eine Umfrage unter Verrechnungspreis-Experten (Finanzbeamte und Steuerberater). Wir finden, dass wenn der Fremdvergleichsgrundsatz zu einer sehr ungleichen Verteilung des Steuersubstrats führt, die Teilnehmer diese Gewinnverteilung im Vergleich zu ausgewogeneren Szenarien als unfair erachten. Dementsprechend zeigen unsere Ergebnisse, dass zwar der Fremdvergleichsgrundsatz als Referenzpunkt für Fairness Überlegungen dient. In Bezug auf die individuell vorgeschlagene faire Gewinnverteilung können aber erhebliche Unterschiede zur fremdvergleichskonformen Gewinnverteilung bestehen.
    Keywords: arm's length principle, corporate income tax, fairness, profit-shifting, Fremdvergleichsgrundsatz, Gewinnverlagerung, Unternehmensbesteuerung, digitale Geschäftsmodelle
    JEL: H26 H25 K34 D90 F23
  5. By: Samuel Klebaner
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to show the possible connections between some legal history research methodologies and the research agenda of the Régulation Theory. As the last is a heterodox theory of institutions, cross-fertilizations with other fields of research open new research perspectives. In this respect, the methodology of the legal history research from the Max-Planck-Institute for European Legal History developed several methodological concepts like multinormativity, governance, science of regulation or law as communication. Such constructivist framework allows analyzing in vivo the norm-making and their incorporation into actors and social structures. In a context of trans-national regulation and growing autonomy of sectoral regulations, such in vivo analysis of the norm making can explain the genesis, transformation and destabilization of macro-economic institutions, which is the core interest of the Régulation Theory.
    Keywords: law and economics; legal history; normativity; régulation; institutions
    JEL: B52 K10
    Date: 2018
  6. By: Mays, Anja
    Abstract: Using fixed effects models and longitudinal data from the British Household Panels Surveys (BHPS) and the follow-up study “Understanding Society” (UKHLS), the current study examines the impact of change in employment status and working conditions on gender role attitudes by simultaneously considering the family structure. A second research question investigates whether employment status and family life interact with one another regarding their influence on gender role attitudes. This study shows that men are more traditional before marriage as well as after separation or divorce, while the same correlation does not seem to exist for women. Moreover, having children affects men’s but not women’s tendencies towards more traditional attitudes. A further important conclusion drawn in this study is that employment status moderates the relationship between children and gender role attitudes: women working full-time develop more egalitarian gender role attitudes if they have additional children while their counterparts who are only working part-time or not working at all become more traditional in the same situation. Regarding occupational circumstances, it turns out that, for men, egalitarianism decreases as income increases; for women, on the other hand, the opposite is the case. Further, job satisfaction affects only the gender role attitudes of women: the higher the job satisfaction is the more egalitarian are their attitudes. In sum, our findings demonstrate that it is essential to consider both family structures and employment circumstances — not to mention their interdependency — to gain a deeper understanding of changes in gender role attitudes of adults.
    Keywords: gender roles,attitude change,women,employment,work
    Date: 2018
  7. By: George, Justine
    Abstract: Since India is a nation of unique diversity, with its economy and society driven by many agencies, institutions and beliefs, the application of economics as well as other social sciences is required to address the various socio-economic problems in India. This approach of inter-disciplinarity has to be followed in the graduate curriculum of economics which has been severely criticised by the academic community as neither job-oriented nor able to understand the full extent of the nature and problems within the Indian economy. This article tries to initiate discussion in kerala context on various grounds such as pedagogical changes, evaluation of course and curriculum, resource constrains and issues of politics and bureaucracy are all inevitable part of the reformation of graduate curriculum of economics.
    Keywords: Under Graduate Curriculum in Economics, Inter-disciplinarity
    JEL: A2 A22 A23
    Date: 2018–10–22
  8. By: Konstantakis, Konstantinos N.; Michaelides, Panayotis G.; Mariolis, Theodore
    Abstract: Since its original formulation, Goodwin’s (1967) approach became a standard endogenous business cycles model. However, despite its elegant mathematical formulation, the empirical estimation of Goodwin-type models has not always ended up in success. The present paper uses the so-called Bhaduri-Marglin accumulation function in Goodwin’s original growth cycle model. Based on its derived equations of motion and dynamic properties, we econometrically estimate the proposed model for the case of the US economy in the time period 1960-2012, using structural breaks. The empirical estimation is very satisfactory and, in general terms, consistent with economic theory and the findings by other researchers on the US economy. The results of this work suggest that the proposed approach is an appropriate vehicle for expanding and improving traditional Goodwin-type models.
    Keywords: Bhaduri-Marglin accumulation function, Goodwin type models, US economy JEL classification:
    JEL: B51 C62 C67 E32
    Date: 2018
  9. By: Philippe BANCE (CRÉAM - Normandie Univ, UNIROUEN, France)
    Abstract: Recent developments in the economic analysis about public goods and commons, initiated notably in relation to the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and to the work of Elinor Ostrom, have highlighted the social utility of their production to meet societal expectations of democracy and of sustainable development. The production of public and social economy organisations is in this perspective of crucial importance for the future, as is the outline of public policies that help develop coproduction or joint production of public goods and services. Thus, Public and Social and Solidarity Economy Partnerships (PSSEP) are the subject of analyzes in the CIRIEC book Providing public goods and commons. Towards coproduction and new forms of governance for a revival of public action that highlights: the importance of these partnerships within the framework of the current paradigm of public action; the induced behavioral transformations of the organizations; the scope that these new forms of partnership can have in terms of co-construction of public action and of responses to expectations on the territories; and the place of these partnerships in a process called here "creative destruction of public action".
    Keywords: public goods, commons, coproduction, joint production, public action, paradigm, destructive creation, social economy organisations, public organisations
    JEL: H41 L23 L31 L32 L33 L38 M14
    Date: 2018–08
  10. By: Goswami, Mridu Prabal; Mitra, Manipushpak; Sen, Debapriya
    Abstract: This paper characterizes lexicographic preferences over alternatives that are identified by a finite number of attributes. We say two alternatives are 'totally different' if they are different with respect to every attribute. Our characterization is based on two key concepts: a weaker notion of continuity called 'mild continuity' (strict preference order between any two totally different alternatives is preserved around their small neighborhoods) and an 'unhappy set' (any alternative outside the set is preferred to all alternatives inside).
    Keywords: lexicographic preference; mild continuity; unhappy set; inclusion of marginally improved alternatives; preference nonreversibility
    JEL: C00 D01
    Date: 2018–12–14
  11. By: Lepers, Etienne
    Abstract: This research is trying to shed light on two myths that are usually widespread: the first one being the idea of the academic economist as a neutral scientist finding uncontestable consensual truths, thanks to uncontestable empirical methods, the second, the idea of the central banker as a Weberian neutral bureaucrat setting aside personal beliefs to act mechanically for the common good. Deconstructing this ‘neutrality illusion’, this work argues that economics is actually a divided and ideologically marked discipline despite its aim at natural-science-type-legitimacy. It argues in a related discussion that such ideological bias also impedes a purely neutral conduct of monetary policy, undermining the very idea of central bank independence. Linking these two arguments, it argues that graduate training in economics is the first place for the formation of biased preferences, because of the substantial ideological sorting that exists across universities. Using a unique database on FOMC members’ votes and ideology, the paper tests this idea empirically and despite unavoidable caveats, finds robust evidence of a systematic impact of the ideological features of their alma mater on FOMC members’ voting behaviour – impact that we found more important than the other traditional determinants of central bankers’ actions.
    Keywords: Fed; monetary policy; FOMC; central bank independence; dissent; ideological bias; educational training; freshwater; saltwater; economics science
    JEL: J1 F3 G3
    Date: 2017–06–07
  12. By: Nicolas Wagner (International Transport Forum)
    Abstract: This paper puts numbers on the investment needs for urban transport infrastructure under different policy scenarios. The cities of the future will be shaped by today’s decisions about physical transport assets, and the urgent need to halt climate change makes it more important than ever to get it right. The analysis shows that a low-carbon transport system is not necessarily more expensive than today’s mobility system, and can even be more cost-efficient.
    Date: 2018–11–09
  13. By: Roxana Barrantes (Departamento de Economía de la Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú); Daniela Ugarte
    Abstract: A pesar de todos sus beneficios, el uso y la apropiación de Internet por adultos mayores sigue siendo menor en comparación de otros adultos. Pero los adultos mayores constituyen una categoría analítica bastante amplia, tanto por edad como por trayectoria previa. En este artículo, se hace énfasis en la historia laboral y educativa que configura una combinación de capitales económicos, culturales y sociales, a la Bordiex, para explicar el uso de internet y la intensidad de uso en los adultos mayores entre 60 y 75 años en Lima y el Área Metropolitana de Buenos Aires. Utilizando datos cualitativos y cuantitativos, este artículo discutirá cómo los adultos mayores que se retiran de empleos de la economía informal se encuentran en desventaja en comparación a los que vienen de trabajos más calificados y demandantes. La exclusión de la sociedad de la información se extiende más allá de la jubilación para las personas que provienen de empleos menos productivos. JEL Classification-JEL: B55, J26, O33
    Keywords: Adultos mayores, Apropiación de Internet, Brecha generacional, Economía informal, Trayectorias tecnológicas
    Date: 2018

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