nep-hme New Economics Papers
on Heterodox Microeconomics
Issue of 2020‒02‒17
eighteen papers chosen by
Carlo D’Ippoliti
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. Economic Production as Life: A Classical Approach to Computational Social Science By Oriol Valles Codina
  2. Gender and Precarious Work in the United States: Evidence from the Contingent Work Supplement 1995-2017 By Randy Albelda; Aimee Bell-Pasht; Charalampos Konstantinidis
  3. Alkire-Foster Indices and Cooperative Membership among Poultry Farming Households in Southwest Nigeria, Evidence from Oyo State. By Ojo, Idowu Oladeji; Popoola, David Prince
  4. What does the Kappian perspective of social costs bring to the public health debate? By Araújo, Eliezer Magno
  6. Elucidating Limited Shareholder Engagement: Identifying Ethical and Epistemological Factors in the Fiduciary By Helen Mussell
  7. Empoderamiento de la mujer indígena: la gestión de organizaciones productivas sustentables y el combate de la pobreza multidimensional y exclusión social By Medel-Ramírez, Carlos; Medel-López, Hilario
  8. Plants and their peasants: a more-than-human approach to plant breeding and seed politics in Brittany, France By Rezvani, L.
  9. Women in the Labor Force; The Role of Fiscal Policies By Stefania Fabrizio; Anna Fruttero; Lisa L Kolovich; Vivian Malta; Marina Mendes Tavares; Daniel Gurara; Nino Tchelishvili
  10. Drivers of Deindustrialisation: Sub-system Analysis of Internationally Fragmented Production Structures By Martin Labaj; Stracova Erika
  11. Inequality, Poverty and the Intra-Household Allocation of Consumption in Senegal By De Vreyer,Philippe H.; Lambert,Sylvie
  12. Are Early Stage Investors Biased Against Women? By Ewens, Michael; Townsend, Richard R.
  13. Are economists getting climate dynamics right and does it matter? By Rick Van der Ploeg; Simon Dietz; Armon Rezai; Frank Venmans
  14. Eurozone periphery post-crisis By Ana Podvršič; Joachim Becker
  15. An Interacting Agent Model of Economic Crisis By Yuichi Ikeda
  16. Factor shares and the rise in corporate net lending By Jan Behringer
  17. Artificial Intelligence, Data, Ethics: An Holistic Approach for Risks and Regulation By Alexis Bogroff; Dominique Guegan
  18. Macro and Micro Implications of the Introduction of Central Bank Digital Currencies: An Overview By Gérard Mondello; Elena Sinelnikova; Pavel Trunin

  1. By: Oriol Valles Codina (Department of Economics, New School for Social Research)
    Abstract: The paper proposes a simple model of multi-sectorial growth along classical, computational and evolutionary lines where equilibrium in prices and quantities is not presumed, but dynamically attained by the systematic, decentralized operation of economic competition over time. The model thus provides a parsimonious and innovative solution to the classic problem of the dynamic convergence of a competitive economy to equilibrium. The model views economic competition as a statistical process over time that results in the dynamic equalization of prices, industry supply and demand, and inter-industrial profit rates in the aggregate. It is disaggregated by firms under an evolving heterogeneous technology operating under alternative micro-foundations, without any recourse to utility or profit maximization, but instead based on reproduction as fundamental closure. In order to relate macro-level patterns to micro-level observations over time, the theoretical framework re-conceptualizes equilibrium as a stationary property of statistical distributions of micro-economic variables, which allows a more realistic empirical description of the economy beyond the conventional notion of equilibrium as a single-point, rest state. The model generates a variety of stylized facts as macro-level emergent outcomes of the competitive process: price dispersion around the competitive value, a spectrum of profitability differentials re specting cost differences, evolutionary selection of the lowest-cost firm, tent-shaped distributions of profit and growth rates that are consistent with the empirical evidence, cost-plus markup pricing, downward-sloping demand curves, and industry-level business cycles in prices and inventories.
    JEL: B51 B52 C63 D21 D58 E11 E14 E30
    Date: 2020–01
  2. By: Randy Albelda; Aimee Bell-Pasht; Charalampos Konstantinidis
    Abstract: A central element of the neoliberal phase of capitalism is the flexibilization of labor and the consequent prevalence of precarious work. Here, we discuss flexibilization, develop a definition and measure of precarious work using the Contingent Work Survey (CWS) supplement to the Current Population Survey, and examine the gender composition of precarious work in the United States. We find that gender and racial hierarchies persist in precarious jobs over the 1995-2017 period. Women — and women with children in particular – are overrepresented in precarious jobs compared to men. Our findings call for a consideration of the impact of the changing nature of work on different groups of workers, and a renewed role for policy to ensure equitable terms of social reproduction.
    Keywords: precarious work, gender, flexibilization, contingent work
    JEL: B54 J21 J40 J82 P16
    Date: 2019–09
  3. By: Ojo, Idowu Oladeji; Popoola, David Prince
    Abstract: This study was conducted in Southwest Nigeria to examine the impact of cooperative membership on the poverty status of poultry farming households in Southwest Nigeria, using the Alkire-Foster multidimensional indices while controlling for selection bias. This can enhance understanding for more impactful policy making. A multistage sampling technique was employed in the random data collection from 210 poultry farmers; 101 Co-operators and 109 Non-co-operators from four local government areas, using well-structured questionnaires. Descriptive statistics, Alkire-Foster multidimensional poverty indices, Treatment effect models of the propensity score matching, inverse probability weighing and nearest neighbour matching algorithms were employed in data analysis using STATA 14. The multidimensional poverty index, incidence of deprivation across nine of the various ten welfare indicators with the aggregated average intensity of deprivations was found to be significantly higher among the Non-co-operator poultry farming household category when compared to their Non-co-operator counterparts. Also, Cooperative societies apart from its poverty reduction impact on the Co-operator, was also found to have significant negative impact on multidimensional poverty status among Non-co-operator poultry farming households. Multipurpose cooperatives was found to reduce poverty more than other types of cooperatives. Finding based policy options were proffered.
    Keywords: Cooperative membership,Multidimensional poverty,Nigeria,Alkire-Foster multidimensional poverty measures,Welfare,Treatment effects
    Date: 2020
  4. By: Araújo, Eliezer Magno (Higher Education Personnel Improvement Coordination - CAPES)
    Abstract: Beckground: this theoretical essay was produced from the reflections and seminars of the PhD Programme in Governance, Knowledge and Innovation, of the Faculty of Economics - University of Coimbra and in the author's personal experience as a public health specialist. The main objective is to deepen the discussion on the concept of social costs in Kapp (Frigato, 2006), and its relationship with public health, also reflecting on the role of the State in the implementation of Public Health Policies. Methods: we follow the guidelines of Meneghetti (2011), understanding that in the essay, the object is studied in its dialectical condition, not necessarily requiring empirical proof. It starts from the guiding questions for theoretical argumentation, seeking to understand the object through associations or analogies, without the formalism of traditional scientific technique. Results: we can see that the Kappian perspective on social costs, expands its reach to the political level, and the concept can serve as a basis for the analysis of public policies. In particular, on public health, this concept contributes to the reflection of the role of the State, in social protection and in its permanent relationship with the market. Conclusion: the Kappian perspective perceives the circularity and interdependence in the relationship between health and the costs of capitalism, favours new insights and a critical reading of the associated institutional political phenomena, power games and conflicts around the public-private relationship in health.
    Date: 2020–01–30
  5. By: Thierry Suchère (EDEHN - Equipe d'Economie Le Havre Normandie - ULH - Université Le Havre Normandie - NU - Normandie Université)
    Abstract: Contemporary of shareholder capitalism, the movie Wall-Street [1987] by Oliver Stone inaugurates a long list of recent movies which proposes a critical look to finance. We think of these other movies: The Wolf of Wall Street [2013] of Martin Scorsese, The Big Short [2015] of Adam McKay… In France, L'Outsider [2016] deals with a story largely told by the media: that of Jérôme Kerviel ex trader and a former employee of La Société Générale. Analyzing this movie, we shall show that it contains a good illustration of trader's work in the world of finance with several teachings. First of all, the movie questions speeches on the rationality of the actors. We see: i) traders who mobilize questionable means as technical analysis to help them in their decisions; ii) an activity on the market generating of stress evacuated by childish collective behaviors. We understand that there is a high risk for traders of switching into pathological behavior such as those observed in the case of gambling addicts. At a second level, the film speaks of a violation of the rules of good practices, deviation of behavior common among traders using illegal means to make more money.... Deviance is approached as a sociological theme. It is a collective activity considering the management systems implemented by the bank to push the traders to the performance at least as guilty as the traders themselves.
    Abstract: Contemporain du capitalisme actionnarial, le film Wall-Street [1987] d'Oliver Stone inaugure une longue liste de films récents porteurs d'un regard critique sur la finance. On pense à ces autres films que sont Le Loup de Wall Street [2013] de Martin Scorsese, The Big Short : le casse du siècle [2015] d'Adam McKay… En France, L'Outsider [2016] traite d'une histoire amplement relayée par les médias : celle de Jérôme Kerviel ex trader de la Société Générale. Analysant ce film, on montrera que nous disposons là d'une bonne illustration de ce qui fait le travail des traders dans l'univers de la finance avec plusieurs enseignements. En premier lieu, le film conteste le discours des économistes mainstream sur la rationalité des acteurs. On y voit (i) des traders qui mobilisent des techniques controversées du type analyse de graphe pour les aider dans leur décision ; (ii) une activité sur le marché génératrice du stress important et qu'on évacue par des comportements de groupe digne de potache. A l'extrême, on comprend que le trading comporte un risque non-nul de basculement vers des comportements pathologiques du type de ceux qui s'observent chez les addicts aux jeux d'argent. A un second niveau, le film parle de la violation des règles de bonne conduite, d'écart de comportement courant chez les traders toujours obligé de se surpasser… Les sociologues voient dans la déviance une activité collective ce qui nous amène à considérer des systèmes de management mis en place par la banque pour pousser les traders à la performance qui sont autant coupables que les traders eux-mêmes.
    Date: 2019
  6. By: Helen Mussell
    Abstract: The legal concept of fiduciary, from the Latin fiducia meaning trust, plays a fundamental role in all financial and business organisations: it acts as a moral safeguard of the relationship between trustee and beneficiary, ensuring that the beneficiaries' best interests are met. It is often referred to as a duty of care. This paper focuses on the ethics of the fiduciary, but from a unique and historical perspective, going back to the original formulation of the fiduciary within a familial context, to reveal not only why care plays a central role in the fiduciary, but to also uncover key foundational presuppositions regarding agential capabilities embedded in the trustee-beneficiary relationship. In doing so, the paper uncovers ethical issues of an epistemological kind at the core of the fiduciary. By using Miranda Fricker's theory of pre-emptive testimonial injustice, the analysis helps shed light on shareholder activism and explains limited engagement to date.
    Keywords: Fiduciary duty, Epistemic Injustice, Ethics of Care, Shareholder Activism, Power, Gender, Beneficiary, Trustee
    JEL: B54 G11 G30 G32 K13
    Date: 2019–12
  7. By: Medel-Ramírez, Carlos; Medel-López, Hilario
    Abstract: The present proposal, as an area of opportunity, addresses the empowerment of indigenous women, as a mechanism that seeks to achieve the development of management skills of sustainable productive organizations in the short, medium and / or long term, create individual commitment to develop their own potentialities and to generate an answer for their social change and human development. This in support of the strategy to combat poverty and social exclusion, through the development of productive projects, through the management of sustainable productive organizations that seek to improve the living conditions and social position of indigenous women. The importance of the research is that it seeks to deepen the social exclusion processes present in indigenous women, in order to propose alternative solutions in order to overcome their condition of multidimensional poverty and that seek to strengthen the actions for empowerment in the development of their management capacities themselves that are elements that promote the development of sustainable productive organizations.
    Keywords: Empowerment of indigenous women, management of sustainable organizations, multidimensional poverty, social exclusion.
    JEL: O13 O35 O38 O49
    Date: 2020–01–20
  8. By: Rezvani, L.
    Abstract: This research paper investigates the articulation of agriculture, plant breeding science and capitalism through the lens of semences paysannes (peasant seed) in Brittany, France, using Anna Tsing’s concept of “scalability”. From the early to mid-19th century, the French state instituted an industrial, productivist agricultural paradigm, based in part on a system of seed standardization and certification which illegalized seed produced by farmers. Today, peasant farmers are pushing back, asserting their right to select and produce their own seed as part of the larger movement for peasant agriculture. Evolutive, heterogeneous, freely reproducible peasant seed is viewed as politically transformative, capable of rebuilding barriers to accumulation in agriculture that were broken down with the modernization process and the spread of hybrid seed. While challenging capitalist appropriation of the seed is central to the movement, the question of how and to whom to sell produce remains fraught. This paper focuses on a group of farmers who have entered into a contract with multinational supermarket chain Carrefour to sell their vegetables produced from semences paysannes at premium prices and with an exclusive label. Using ethnographic material based on 5 weeks of fieldwork with farmers in northern Brittany, this paper questions if the biological specificities of semences paysannes guarantee their resistance to capitalist appropriation and accumulation. By analysing Carrefour’s incorporation of vegetables from peasant seed, it is possible to understand how biological barriers to appropriation at the input stage of agriculture can produce value for supermarket capital. However, producing peasant seed reintroduces the unpredictability of plant life onto the farm, countering the way modern plant breeding has suppressed the liveliness of nature. In conjunction with organic practices, seed production help constitute farms as multispecies refugia, connecting farmers and plants in caring relationships and helping to address environmental harm wrought by industrial agriculture. Peasant seed production also necessitates collaboration between farmers, building a form of autonomy that is collective rather than individualistic. Thus, peasant seed production retains its subversive potential in the way it transforms farmer livelihoods and production practices, both materially and affectively.
    Keywords: peasant seed, peasant agriculture, plant breeding, scalability, appropriation, capitalism, industrial agriculture, human-plant relationships, vegetal political ecology
    Date: 2020–01–31
  9. By: Stefania Fabrizio; Anna Fruttero; Lisa L Kolovich; Vivian Malta; Marina Mendes Tavares; Daniel Gurara; Nino Tchelishvili
    Abstract: High level messages of this SDN: Cross-country statistical analysis suggests that: Gender budgeting, through tax and spending policies, can play a key role in addressing gender inequality and advancing women’s empowerment in developing and advanced economies, suggesting that there is a great scope for policy intervention. Different fiscal interventions have different pay-offs, depending on the country-specific features and development level. Model-based analysis will reveal possible channels through which fiscal interventions can affect gender inequality, suggesting that: The impact of fiscal interventions on female labour force participation and gender wage gap depends greatly on the design of the measures. Fiscal policy measures to address gender gaps can have significant impact on economic growth, income inequality and poverty that depends greatly on the design of the fiscal measures and country features.
    Keywords: Gender;Labor force policy;Gender equality;Fiscal policy;Gender Budgeting
  10. By: Martin Labaj; Stracova Erika
    Abstract: This paper deals with the drivers of deindustrialisation in major developed countries over the last two decades. In contrast to some recent studies, we show that the importance of manufacturing for the world economy has not declined during the examined period. We argue that the observed deindustrialisation measured by direct employment and value-added shares of manufacturing underestimates the importance of manufacturing. Many former in-house activities of manufacturing are nowadays outsourced to other industries and are not accounted for in the direct statistics. We show that at least in major developed countries the level of outsourcing reached its limits at the beginning of the new millennium. At the same time, the offshoring of activities interlinked with manufacturing became the dominant driver of deindustrialisation in these countries. We are the first to study the importance of manufacturing from a truly global perspective and we use final consumption expenditures approach that allows us to consistently analyse the role of i) outsourcing, ii) offshoring and iii) changes in final demand, in its development.
    Keywords: Input-output analysis, deindustrialisation, manufacturing, offshoring
    JEL: C67 L60 O14
    Date: 2019–07–07
  11. By: De Vreyer,Philippe H.; Lambert,Sylvie
    Abstract: Intra-household inequalities have long been a source of concern for policy design, but there is very little evidence. The current practice of ignoring inequality within households could lead to an underestimation of both overall inequality and poverty levels, as well as to the misclassification of some individuals as regards to their poverty status. Using a novel survey for Senegal in which consumption data were collected at a disaggregated level, this paper quantifies these various effects. In total, two opposing effects, one on mean and one on inequality, compensate each other in terms of the overall poverty rate, but individual poverty statuses are affected. Intra-household consumption inequalities accounts for 14 percent of inequality in Senegal. The authors uncover the fact that household structure and organization are key correlates of intra-household inequality and individual risk of poverty.
    Date: 2020–01–23
  12. By: Ewens, Michael (California Institute of Technology); Townsend, Richard R.
    Abstract: We study whether early stage investors have gender biases using a proprietary dataset from An- gelList that allows us to observe private interactions between investors and fundraising startups. We find that male investors express less interest in female entrepreneurs compared to observably similar male entrepreneurs. In contrast, female investors express more interest in female entrepreneurs. These findings do not appear to be driven by within-gender screening/monitoring advantages or gender differences in risk preferences. Moreover, the male-led startups that male investors express interest in do not outperform the female-led startups they express interest in—they underperform. Overall, the evidence is consistent with gender biases.
    Date: 2019–10–01
  13. By: Rick Van der Ploeg; Simon Dietz; Armon Rezai; Frank Venmans
    Abstract: We show that several of the most important economic models of climate change produce climate dynamics inconsistent with the current crop of models in climate science. First, most economic models exhibit far too long a delay between an impulse of CO2 emissions and warm¬ing. Second, few economic models incorporate positive feedbacks in the carbon cycle, whereby carbon sinks remove less CO2 from the atmosphere, the more CO2 they have already removed cumulatively, and the higher is temperature. These inconsistencies affect economic prescriptions to abate CO2 emissions. Controlling for how the economy is represented, different climate mod¬els result in significantly different optimal CO2 emissions. A long delay between emissions and warming leads to optimal carbon prices that are too low and too much sensitivity of optimal carbon prices to the discount rate. Omitting positive carbon cycle feedbacks also leads to op¬timal carbon prices that are too low. We conclude it is important for policy purposes to bring economic models in line with the state of the art in climate science.
    Keywords: carbon cycle, carbon price, climate change, integrated assessment modelling, positive feedbacks, social cost of carbon
    JEL: Q54
    Date: 2020–02–11
  14. 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
  15. By: Yuichi Ikeda
    Abstract: Most national economies are linked by international trade. Consequently, economic globalization forms a massive and complex economic network with strong links, that is, interactions arising from increasing trade. Various interesting collective motions are expected to emerge from strong economic interactions in a global economy under trade liberalization. Among the various economic collective motions, economic crises are our most intriguing problem. In our previous studies, we have revealed that the Kuramoto's coupled limit-cycle oscillator model and the Ising-like spin model on networks are invaluable tools for characterizing the economic crises. In this study, we develop a mathematical theory to describe an interacting agent model that derives the Kuramoto model and the Ising-like spin model by using appropriate approximations. Our interacting agent model suggests phase synchronization and spin ordering during economic crises. We confirm the emergence of the phase synchronization and spin ordering during economic crises by analyzing various economic time series data. We also develop a network reconstruction model based on entropy maximization that considers the sparsity of the network. Here network reconstruction means estimating a network's adjacency matrix from a node's local information. The interbank network is reconstructed using the developed model, and a comparison is made of the reconstructed network with the actual data. We successfully reproduce the interbank network and the known stylized facts. In addition, the exogenous shock acting on an industry community in a supply chain network and financial sector are estimated. Estimation of exogenous shocks acting on communities of in the real economy in the supply chain network provide evidence of the channels of distress propagating from the financial sector to the real economy through the supply chain network.
    Date: 2020–01
  16. By: Jan Behringer
    Abstract: The corporate sector has turned from a net borrowing position to a net lending position in many advanced countries over the past decades. This phenomenon is rather unusual as the corporate sector had historically borrowed funds from other sectors in the economy. In this paper, we analyze how changes in the distribution of income between wages and profits have affected corporate net lending in a sample of 40 countries for the period 1990-2016. A consistent finding is that an increase (decrease) in the corporate profit share leads to an increase (decrease) in corporate net lending, controlling for other corporate net lending determinants. We disentangle the effects of the profit share on corporate saving and investment and explore a number of alternative explanations of our results, including changes in the cost of capital, shifts in the composition of industrial sectors, the growing importance of intangible capital, and a temporary crisis phenomenon. We conclude that factor shares are an important driver of macroeconomic trends and that the rise in corporate profits has contributed considerably to the improvement in the corporate net lending positions across countries.
    Keywords: Corporate saving, investment, income distribution, cost of capital
    JEL: E21 E22 E25 G30
    Date: 2020
  17. By: Alexis Bogroff (UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne); Dominique Guegan (UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne, CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Labex ReFi - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne, University of Ca’ Foscari [Venice, Italy])
    Abstract: An extensive list of risks relative to big data frameworks and their use through models of artificial intelligence is provided along with measurements and implementable solutions. Bias, interpretability and ethics are studied in depth, with several interpretations from the point of view of developers, companies and regulators. Reflexions suggest that fragmented frameworks increase the risks of models misspecification, opacity and bias in the result; Domain experts and statisticians need to be involved in the whole process as the business objective must drive each decision from the data extraction step to the final activatable prediction. We propose an holistic and original approach to take into account the risks encountered all along the implementation of systems using artificial intelligence from the choice of the data and the selection of the algorithm, to the decision making.
    Keywords: Artificial Intelligence,Bias,Big Data,Ethics,Governance,Interpretability,Regulation,Risk
    Date: 2019–06
  18. By: Gérard Mondello (Université Côte d'Azur, France; GREDEG CNRS); Elena Sinelnikova (Center for the Study of Central Banks, Institute for Applied Economic Studies, RANEPA); Pavel Trunin (Macroeconomics and Finance Division, Division Head Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy, Moscow)
    Abstract: After the emergence and widespread of cryptocurrencies central banks are studying how their own digital currencies may help and favor the monetary policy implementation. There are many challenges to this process both in legal and economic (financial, monetary) areas. The paper studies the potential movement from a two-tier banking system (central bank and banks) to a one-tier banking system in case of CBDCs emission, including the issues of competition and commercial banking profitability. More specific question is the change of the transmission of monetary policy with CBDC emission.
    Keywords: CBDC, digital currency, cryptocurrency, monetary policy
    JEL: B53 E42
    Date: 2020–02

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