nep-hme New Economics Papers
on Heterodox Microeconomics
Issue of 2019‒11‒25
fifteen papers chosen by
Carlo D’Ippoliti
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. The location of the value theories in the complex plane and the degree of regularity-controllability of actual economies By Mariolis, Theodore
  2. A Global Revolutionary Class will ride the Tiger of Alienation By Hanappi, Hardy
  3. Econophysics deserves a revamping By Paolo Magrassi
  4. Gender Aspects of Urban Economic Growth and Development By Chant, Sylvia
  5. Social norms as a barrier to women’s employment in developing countries By Jayachandran Seema
  6. Historical family systems and lasting developmental trajectories in Europe: the power of the family? By Szoltysek, Mikolaj; Poniat, Radosław
  7. Finance, property rights and productivity in Italian cooperatives By Donald A R George; Eddi Fontanari; Ermanno Celeste Tortia
  8. Decomposition Analysis of Air Pollutants During the Transition and Post-Transition Periods in the Czech Republic By Milan Scasny; Beng Wah Ang; Lukas Recka
  9. Measurement of Multi-Dimensional Poverty in India: A state level analysis By Tripathi, Sabyasachi; Yenneti, Komali
  10. Eurozone periphery post-crisis By Ana Podvršič; Joachim Becker
  11. Competition of noise and collectivity in global cryptocurrency trading: route to a self-contained market By Stanis{\l}aw Dro\.zd\.z; Ludovico Minati; Pawe{\l} O\'swi\k{e}cimka; Marek Stanuszek; Marcin W\k{a}torek
  12. Promoting an academic culture in the Arab world By Moustafa, Khaled
  13. Agricultural development, trade, and income distribution: A 2015 social accounting matrix multiplier decomposition approach for Mozambique By van Seventer Dirk; Mondlane Silvana
  14. No Man is an Island - Social coordination and the Environment By Nyborg, Karine
  15. Technology, profits and wages By Andrea Coveri; Mario Pianta

  1. By: Mariolis, Theodore
    Abstract: This paper expands the spectral analysis of the Sraffian value system, and shows that: (i) the hitherto alternative value theories can be conceived of as “perturbations” of the so-called pure labour value theory; (ii) these theories correspond to specific complex plane locations of the eigenvalues of the vertically integrated technical coefficients matrix; and (iii) the actual economies cannot be coherently analyzed in terms of the traditional value theories, despite the fact that their Krylov (or controllability) matrices are characterized by rather low degrees of regularity-controllability and relatively low numerical ranks. Hence, on the one hand, the Sraffian value theory is not only the most general one but also provides a sound empirical basis, while on the other hand, real-world economies constitute almost irregular-uncontrollable systems, and this explains the specific shape features of the empirical value-wage-profit rate curves.
    Keywords: Almost irregular-uncontrollable system; Characteristic value distributions; Circulant matrices; Degree of regularity-controllability; Numerical rank; Value theories
    JEL: B51 B53 C67 D46 D57
    Date: 2019–11–13
  2. By: Hanappi, Hardy
    Abstract: This paper investigates how the global class of organic intellectuals will emerge. It thus updates Marx view on class struggle dynamics of the 19th century by taking the quantum leap of productive forces during the last 200 years serious. The most striking new element is the tremendous increase of the force of information power brought about by ICT. The emergence of Fascism and Stalinism in the first half of the 20th century was just a frightening first symptom of the coming age of alienation. Today, basing class membership – including the emergence of class consciousness - only on the (physical) local position in industrial production units is insufficient, even misleading. Global production is by its inbuilt complexity blurring the visibility of a specific worker’s exploitation status. There is necessary alienation, but then class struggle managed disinformation and manipulation is added. For the progressive classes this implies that they are split along the lines of their respective education status – how far the fog can be dissolved. This is where the concept of the global class of organic intellectuals, of an avant-garde, enters. The paper shows that already in the emergence of this new socialist agent the structures, in particular the information structures, of the next mode of production have to be present. It turns out that features, which are evil for capitalist thought are often the most important ingredients for the constitution of the forerunners of a socialist global society: persistent contradictions and diversity, exploding oscillations, deep and time consuming dialogues, irrational solidarity, aesthetic stubbornness. The new intellectuals can remain rooted in local circumstances, can be organic, because they share many of these features with the exploited classes within which they act as catalyst, as avant-garde. In the end global socialism, organized by a revolving class of organic intellectuals, has to master alienation. This is the challenge.
    Keywords: Political Economy, Alienation, Socialism, Oraganic Intellectuals
    JEL: B51 P00 P16 P40
    Date: 2019–11–05
  3. By: Paolo Magrassi
    Abstract: The paper argues that attracting more economists and adopting a more-precise definition of dynamic complexity might help econophysics acquire more attention in the economics community and bring new lymph to economic research. It may be necessary to concentrate less on the applications than on the basics of economic complexity, beginning with expansion and deepening of the study of small systems with few interacting components, while until thus far complexity has been assumed to be a prerogative of complicated systems only. It is possible that without a thorough analysis at that level, the understanding of systems that are at the same time complex and complicated will continue to elude economics and econophysics research altogether. To that purpose, the paper initiates and frames a definition of dynamic complexity grounded on the concept of non-linear dynamical system.
    Date: 2019–11
  4. By: Chant, Sylvia
    Abstract: The urbanization process is frequently shaped by prevailing constructions of gender. The recognition of this phenomenon is vital both in diagnosis and policy terms. This paper aims at illustrating the importance of gender in three major related aspects of urban growth and development: (i) transformations in household structure; (ii) shifts in household survival strategies and; (iii) changing patterns of employment. The paper concludes that although urbanization is gendered in all parts of the developing world, variability in patterns and outcomes in different countries makes it difficult to identify particular ways in which policy interventions might diminish gender inequalities in urban environments. Besides this, the paper concludes that unless gender inequalities are attenuated in rural settings there is little scope to effect major improvements in existing disparities. Although the 1980s and 1990s have seen an increasing acknowledgement of women's contribution to development, so far, policies which incorporate women into the development process have shown little concern about empowering women themselves.
    Keywords: International Development
  5. By: Jayachandran Seema
    Abstract: This paper discusses cultural barriers to women’s participation and success in the labor market in developing countries. I begin by describing how gender norms influence the relationship between economic development and female employment, as well as how gender norms differ substantially across societies at the same level of economic development. I then discuss in more detail specific gender-related social norms and how they constrain women’s employment. I present examples of policies aimed at dismantling these cultural barriers to female employment and the impacts they have.
    Keywords: Institutions,Social norms,Employment,Female labour force,Culture,Developing countries,Economic development,Labor supply
    Date: 2019
  6. By: Szoltysek, Mikolaj; Poniat, Radosław
    Abstract: Last years have witnessed a growing interest in economics and cross-cultural studies in the role of the historical family as the instigator of disparate developmental trajectories. This new emerging literature has already provoked a considerable amount of controversy, involving debates on the precise underlying mechanisms, the role of non-familial institutions and the possibility of reversed causality, as well as the quality of historical data. Using novel historical database of European family this paper reaffirms the hypothesis that historical family organization could be one of the intermediate factors associated with developmental and value disparities among European nations today pointed out in earlier scholarship. We show that countries starting out from more patriarchal family structures in the past exhibit more hierarchical gender relations, more collectivist mindsets, and lower levels of economic and human development in the present. These findings suggest that the criticism of the family role in comparative development may be premature, and that links between historical family organisation and developmental gradients merit further attention.
    Date: 2019–10–04
  7. By: Donald A R George; Eddi Fontanari; Ermanno Celeste Tortia
    Date: 2019–11
  8. By: Milan Scasny (Institute of Economic Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University, Opletalova 26, 110 00, Prague, Czech Republic; Charles University Environment Centre, Jose Martiho 407/2, 162 00, Prague, Czech Republic); Beng Wah Ang (Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, National University of Singapore, 10 Kent Ridge Crescent, 119260, Singapore); Lukas Recka (Institute of Economic Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University, Opletalova 26, 110 00, Prague, Czech Republic)
    Abstract: It is common in index decomposition studies to decompose an aggregate into five or more factors. This applies to energy-related carbon emissions since carbon emission coefficient by fuel type is relatively easy to derive. However, it is extremely demanding to derive the air pollutant emission coefficient by fuel type and by sector. As a result, air pollutant emissions have typically been decomposed into three factors — the scale, the structure and the intensity factor. Using a unique facility-level dataset, this is the first study that decomposes air pollutant emissions into five factors, i.e. by decomposing the emission intensity effect further into the fuel-intensity, the fuel-mix, and the emission-fuel intensity factors. Specifically, we use a 5-factor Logarithmic Mean Divisia Index (LMDI) method to decompose annual changes in the emissions of four types of air quality pollutants (SO2, NOx, CO and particulate matters) stemming from large stationary emission sources in the Czech Republic. Our analysis covers the period 1990 to 2016, during which the Czech economy transited towards a market economy. It also implemented strict environmental regulation to become a full member of the European Union in 2004. The emissions decreased cumulatively by 74% or more in the 1990s, remained at stable levels during the 2000s and declined again thereafter. We examine how the results differ if one relies on the ‘standard’ 3-factor and the 4-factor decompositions.
    Keywords: LMDI, 5-factors IDA, air quality pollutants, emission per fuel type, economic transition
    JEL: P28 Q43 Q53 Q56
    Date: 2019–11
  9. By: Tripathi, Sabyasachi; Yenneti, Komali
    Abstract: The paper measures the multidimensional poverty index (MPI) in India by considering National Sample Survey (NSS) data on ‘Consumption Expenditure’ for the period of 2004-05 and 2011-12 by using Alkire and Foster’s (2011) methodology and by considering three main indicators i.e., standard of living, education and income at the household or persons level. The results show that multidimensional poverty head count has declined from 62.2 percent in 2004-05 to 38.4 percent in 2011-12. However, rural/ urban separate analysis clearly indicates a sharp decline in rural poverty compared to urban poverty reduction. Lack of education of the household members made the highest contribution to poverty, followed by income and standard of living in India. State level analysis show that Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Orissa, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, and Arunachal Pradesh, have a higher poverty head count ratio while Kerala, Mizoram, Nagaland, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, and Haryana have lower poverty rate. Promoting local resource and tourism based industries through urbanization, higher and job oriented education, and long term saving for creating funding are required to reduce poverty in India.
    Keywords: Consumption expenditure, multidimensional poverty, poverty Indices, India
    JEL: I30 I32 R10
    Date: 2019–01–08
  10. By: Ana Podvršič (CEPN - Centre d'Economie de l'Université Paris Nord - UP13 - Université Paris 13 - USPC - Université Sorbonne Paris Cité - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, CSEES - Centre for Southeast European Studies, Karl Franzens University Graz); Joachim Becker (Vienna University of Economics and Business - WU - Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien [Austria])
    Abstract: The article provides a comparative study of Slovenia and Slovakia to analyse the transformation of dependent accumulation regimes in the Eurozone periphery after 2010. The study of these two economies from CEE is particularly insightful to understand how the Eurozone countries from the industrial periphery coped with the challenges of restructuring after the outbreak of the crisis. The article combines dependency and régulationist approaches to study European asymmetrical accumulation regimes. We argue that the post-crisis economic trajectories in CEE continue to reflect main traits of the pre-crisis asymmetrical relationship with the core. The key vulnerabilities are linked to the ongoing reliance on FDI for export industrialisation, the narrow export specialisation, and, particularly in Slovakia, a rapid expansion of household debt. In Slovenia, under the EU supervision, the pre-crisis private debts were shifted to the public sector and henceforth burden public investment. Our findings suggest that financialisation as well the Eurozone monetary constraints should be systemically included in the analysis of post-crisis CEE growth trajectories. In addition, despite economic recovery, the accumulation regimes at Eurozone industrialised periphery continue to exhibit strong anti-labour bias.
    Keywords: financialisation,Slovakia,Eurozone crisis,uneven development,Slovenia
    Date: 2019–11
  11. By: Stanis{\l}aw Dro\.zd\.z; Ludovico Minati; Pawe{\l} O\'swi\k{e}cimka; Marek Stanuszek; Marcin W\k{a}torek
    Abstract: Cross-correlations in fluctuations of the daily exchange rates within the basket of the 100 highest-capitalization cryptocurrencies over the period October 1, 2015, through March 31, 2019, are studied. The corresponding dynamics predominantly involve one leading eigenvalue of the correlation matrix, while the others largely coincide with those of Wishart random matrices. However, the magnitude of the principal eigenvalue, and thus the degree of collectivity, strongly depends on which cryptocurrency is used as a base. It is largest when the base is the most peripheral cryptocurrency; when more significant ones are taken into consideration, its magnitude systematically decreases, nevertheless preserving a sizable gap with respect to the random bulk, which in turn indicates that the organization of correlations becomes more heterogeneous. This finding provides a criterion for recognizing which currencies or cryptocurrencies play a dominant role in the global crypto-market. The present study shows that over the period under consideration, the Bitcoin (BTC) predominates, hallmarking exchange rate dynamics at least as influential as the US dollar. The BTC started dominating around the year 2017, while further cryptocurrencies, like the Ethereum (ETH) and even Ripple (XRP), assumed similar trends. At the same time, the USD, an original value determinant for the cryptocurrency market, became increasingly disconnected, its related characteristics eventually approaching those of a fictitious currency. These results are strong indicators of incipient independence of the global cryptocurrency market, delineating a self-contained trade resembling the Forex.
    Date: 2019–11
  12. By: Moustafa, Khaled
    Abstract: A wide gap between academic education and ethical conducts is perceptible in many research and scientific activities. Basically, scientists with high academic degrees are expected to behave ethically but unfortunately this is not always the case. Scientific research in the Arab world is sometimes challenged with many flaws and shortcomings such as the lack of ethics, effectiveness and well-defined investment strategies. The academic environment is also entangled with invidiousness, selfishness, and overwhelming bureaucracy in an obvious and paradoxical way with the Arab culture that emphasizes ethics. Unethical symptoms are ranging from trivial bad behaviors, such as the absence of basic communication ethics and nonresponse to formal requests or emails to more serious misconducts in research and medical practices. The objectives of science and research programs in many Arab institutions are directed toward artificial and superficial prestige more than toward real and local scientific and socio-economic developments. To alleviate such issues, Arab scientists and policymakers need to deeply rethink the way research and development policies are currently planned and performed with particular focus on local priorities with the highest ethical and methodological values considered.
    Date: 2018–07–11
  13. By: van Seventer Dirk; Mondlane Silvana
    Abstract: This paper considers the impact of agriculture and international trade development on income distribution and economic activity in Mozambique. A social accounting matrix multiplier decomposition model is used—in particular, an extension of the standard model that details the process of income distribution through the economy’s institutions. When we focus on the impact on rural low-income households, the emphasis is on the food crop and food-processing sectors. The results suggest surprisingly that such households do not benefit much from exogenous increases in agricultural crops; high-income rural and urban households benefit more. A full decomposition of the multipliers suggests that rural low-income households link strongly to foodprocessing, but that the latter is not very prominent in the Mozambican economy due to high import penetration. The second focus is therefore on international trade, which reveals that the high rates of imports regarding food-processing are mainly sourced from South Africa.
    Keywords: Agriculture,multiplier effects,Decomposition methods,Social Accounting Matrix,Trade,Income distribution
    Date: 2019
  14. By: Nyborg, Karine (Dept. of Economics, University of Oslo)
    Abstract: Humans are fundamentally social. Social activities require coordination, which may yield multiple equilibria in the form of stable, self-reinforcing patterns of herd behavior. Since environmental impacts can differ substantially between alternative equilibria, such self-reinforcing behaviors may, from an environmental perspective, be viewed as representing virtuous or vicious cycles. Environmental policies can help break the self-fulfilling expectations of vicious cycles, tipping the economy to more environment-friendly equilibria.
    Keywords: Environmental policy; multiple equilibria; social interaction; tipping points
    JEL: D10 D62 D91 Q01 Q50 Q58
    Date: 2019–06–17
  15. By: Andrea Coveri; Mario Pianta
    Abstract: Building on a Post-Keynesian theoretical framework, integrated with an analysis of technology, this article investigates the structural determinants of income distribution. We develop a simultaneous model on wage and profit dynamics identifying as key determinants productivity growth, capital-labour conflict, the relevance of trade unions and different strategies of technological change and offshoring. We perform an industry-level analysis on 38 manufacturing and service sectors for six major European countries from 1994 to 2014. Wage and profit dynamics is shown to be rooted in structural change, productivity growth and capital-labour conflict, with profits driven by product innovation and offshoring, and wages rising faster where new products are relevant and trade unions have a greater role.
    Keywords: Income distribution; innovation; offshoring; Europe; industries.
    Date: 2019–11–13

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