nep-hme New Economics Papers
on Heterodox Microeconomics
Issue of 2021‒10‒11
nineteen papers chosen by
Carlo D’Ippoliti
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. Computational Methods and Classical-Marxian Economics By Jonathan Cogliano; Roberto Veneziani; Naoki Yoshihara
  2. On the Labor Theory of Value as the Basis for the Analysis of Economic Inequality in the Capitalist Economy By Naoki Yoshihara
  3. The Future of  Heterodox  Economics By Teresa Ghilarducci; Zachary Knauss; Richard McGahey; William Milberg; Drew Landes; Edward Nilaj
  4. Deepening and Widening Social Identity Analysis in Economics By Davis, John B.
  5. Measurement of innovation: the use and misuse of indicators and scoreboards By Attila Havas
  6. Agricultural Cooperative Statistics 2019 By Wadsworth, James; Rivera, Judith; Lapp, Kevin
  7. Unequal entanglements: how arts practitioners reflect on the impact of intensifying economic inequality By Kolbe, Kristina
  8. The effect of marketing through cooperatives on income distribution in Brazil By De Carvalho Reis Neves, Mateus; Freitas, Carlos Otavio; De Figueiredo Silva, Felipe; Braga, Marcelo J.; Costa, Davi M.
  9. ¿Es la economía un sistema complejo en eterno desequilibrio? By Diego Fernando à vila Ibáñez
  10. Exact and robust asymptotic solutions to nonlinear Hawkes processes: power law exponents of intensity distributions and methods By Kiyoshi Kanazawa; Didier Sornette
  11. Zipf's law in nonlinear self-excited Hawkes processes By Kiyoshi Kanazawa; Didier Sornette
  12. Physics-inspired analysis of the two-class income distribution in the USA in 1983-2018 By Danial Ludwig; Victor M. Yakovenko
  13. Stock Returns, Market Trends, and Information Theory: A Statistical Equilibrium Approach By Emanuele Citera
  14. How Short is the Short Run in the Neo-Kaleckian Growth Model? By Ettore Gallo
  15. Théorie économique et philosophie de la mesure By Jean-Luc Gaffard
  16. Geography of Science: Competitiveness and Inequality By Aurelio Patelli; Lorenzo Napolitano; Giulio Cimini; Andrea Gabrielli
  17. Routine-biased technical change can fail: Evidence from France By Fana Marta; Giangregorio Luca
  18. Dominant Capital and the Government By Bichler, Shimshon; Nitzan, Jonathan
  19. Sex workers’ everyday security in the Netherlands and the impact of COVID-19 By Cubides Kovacsics, M.I.; Santos, W.; Siegmann, K.A.

  1. By: Jonathan Cogliano (University of Massachusetts Boston); Roberto Veneziani (Queen Mary University of London); Naoki Yoshihara (School of Economics and Management, Kochi University of Technology)
    Abstract: This article surveys computational approaches to classical-Marxian economics. These approaches include a range of techniques { such as numerical simulations, agent-based models, and Monte Carlo methods { and cover many areas within the classical-Marxian tradition. We focus on three major themes in classical-Marxian economics, namely price and value theory; inequality, exploitation, and classes; and technical change, profi tability, growth and cycles. We show that computational methods are particularly well-suited to capture certain key elements of the vision of the classical-Marxian approach and can be fruitfully used to make signi ficant progress in the study of classical-Marxian topics.
    Keywords: Computational Methods, Agent-Based Models, Classical Economists, Marx
    JEL: C63 B51 B41
    Date: 2021–09
  2. By: Naoki Yoshihara (School of Economics and Management, Kochi University of Technology)
    Abstract: In this paper, we have reviewed the labor theory of value as the basis for the analysis of economic inequality in the capitalist economy. According to the standard Marxian view, the system of labor values of individual commodities can serve as the center of gravity for long-term price fluctuations in the precapitalist economy with simple commodity-production, where no exploitative social relation emerges, while in the modern capitalist economy, the labor value system is replaced by the prices of production associated with an equal positive rate of profits as the center of gravity, in which exploitative relation between the capitalist and the working classes is a generic and persistent feature of economic inequality. Some of the literature such as Morishima (1973, 1974) criticized this view by showing that the labor values of individual commodities are no longer well-defined if the capitalist economy has joint production. Given these arguments, this paper firstly shows that the system of individual labor values can be still well-defined in the capitalist economy with joint production whenever the set of available production techniques is all-productive. Secondly, this paper shows that it is generally impossible to verify that the labor-value pricing serves as the center of gravity for price fluctuations in precapitalist economies characterized by the full development of simple commodity-production.
    Keywords: UE-Exploitation, The Labor Theory of Value, Prices of Production
    JEL: D63 D51
    Date: 2021–09
  3. By: Teresa Ghilarducci; Zachary Knauss; Richard McGahey; William Milberg; Drew Landes; Edward Nilaj (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis (SCEPA))
    Abstract: We assess economics research and teaching frameworks in the United States by examining how knowledge is produced and ranked, the flaws and strengths of heterodox economic theory; and how students are trained, especially for careers in economic policy. We challenge the meaning of established terminology such as ‘heterodoxy’ and ‘mainstream’ by investigating their utility as a marker and to illuminate major barriers to the successful adoption of alternative economic theories in academia and the public discourse. Based on interviews with experienced economists working with heterodox paradigms in both mainstream and heterodox institutions, we identify three barriers 1) Neoclassical hegemony, 2) Weakness of heterodox theory, and 3) Pedagogy and training in economics.
    Keywords: Heterodox economics; pedagogy and training; cross discipline synthesis
    JEL: H55 J26 J32
    Date: 2021–03
  4. By: Davis, John B. (Department of Economics Marquette University)
    Abstract: Abstract: This paper is a contribution to the Erasmus Journal of Economics and Philosophy symposium on Dasgupta and Goyal’s “Narrow Identities†(2019) that models how individuals develop social identities. They do not distinguish categorical and relational social identities, model only social group social identities, minimize intersectionality (having multiple social group identities), and ignore inter-relational, social role social identities. In a club theory-like analysis, they portray the world as locked into polarized social group rivalries, where democracy matters little compared to social group loyalty. A problem with explaining social identity only in terms of social group identity is that the ‘identify with’ basis of social group loyalty undermines saying people are distinct individuals. Dasgupta and Goyal use the standard circular preferences conception of what makes people distinct individuals, so they cannot say individuals do not disappear into social groups. However, a relational social roles-based social identity analysis offers a way of explaining how people can be distinct individuals and have social identities, particularly where social group identities are connected to social role identities. This analysis is outlined using a distinction between relatively closed and relatively open behavioral domains.
    Keywords: social identity, social groups, social roles
    JEL: B41 B50
    Date: 2021–09
  5. By: Attila Havas (Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Institute of Economics)
    Abstract: The choice of indicators to measure innovation processes and assess performance is of vital significance. This paper argues that those economic theories give a more accurate, more reliable account of innovation activities that follow a broad approach of innovation, that is, consider all knowledge-intensive activities leading to new products (goods or services), processes, business models, as well as new organisational and managerial solutions, and thus take into account various types, forms and sources of knowledge exploited for innovation by all sorts of actors in all economic sectors. In contrast, the narrow approach to innovation focuses on the so-called high-tech goods and sectors. The broad approach is needed to collect data and other types of information, on which sound theories can be built and reliable and comprehensive analyses of innovation activities can be offered to decision-makers to underpin public policies and company strategies.
    Keywords: Schools of economics; Mainstream economics; Evolutionary economics of innovation; Measurement of innovation; Composite indicators; Scoreboards, league tables
    JEL: B52 C80 O31 O38 Y10
    Date: 2019–11
  6. By: Wadsworth, James; Rivera, Judith; Lapp, Kevin
    Abstract: Excerpts from the report Introduction: Agricultural cooperative statistics are collected annually and published to provide information on the position and trends among the Nation’s farmer, rancher, and fishery cooperatives. These statistics are used for cooperative benchmarking, research, technical assistance, education, planning, and public policy. The collection, analysis, and dissemination of cooperative statistics by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) are authorized by The Cooperative Marketing Act of 1926. This report presents agricultural cooperative statistics for 2019 in table and chart format and consists of six sections: (I) overall summary cooperative statistics; (II) number of cooperatives, memberships, and employees; (III) business volume by State, and losses; (IV) Top 100 cooperatives; (V) benchmark statistics for cooperative comparisons; and (VI) cooperative statistical trends. Selected highlights are provided at the beginning of each section, and associated tables follow.
    Keywords: Agribusiness, Farm Management, Financial Economics
    Date: 2021–01
  7. By: Kolbe, Kristina
    Abstract: This article discusses how arts practitioners reflect on their work amidst deepening economic inequality. Given the renewed interest in the social role of arts institutions under conditions of financialised neo-liberalism, the paper traces the complex ways in which economic imperatives figure in cultural practice. Drawing on interviews with UK-based gallery directors, museum curators, art consultants, and artists, I map out how austerity politics and intensifying privatisation processes have a profound impact on the workings of the sector, how they recalibrate dynamics between private and public artworlds, and how they shape processes of production and curation. My data specifically document how increasing economic precarity brings into relief structural inequalities of gender, race and (post)-colonial legacies already manifesting in the artworld. Rather than understanding austerity as a financial condition only, the paper thus presents an empirical exploration of the wider inequalities that it has exacerbated, from arts funding to institutions’ programming practices.
    Keywords: art institutions; austerity; creative labour; cultural policy; inequality; museums; Marshall Institute
    JEL: N0
    Date: 2021–09–14
  8. By: De Carvalho Reis Neves, Mateus; Freitas, Carlos Otavio; De Figueiredo Silva, Felipe; Braga, Marcelo J.; Costa, Davi M.
    Keywords: Marketing, Community/Rural/Urban Development, Agribusiness
    Date: 2021–08
  9. By: Diego Fernando à vila Ibáñez
    Abstract: Este artículo presenta una discusión general sobre algunas de las razones que se tienen para creer que una economía estaría mejor enmarcada en la teoría de los sistemas complejos (orgánicos) que en la teoría de los sistemas mecánicos de la escuela neoclásica dominante. Los sistemas complejos se caracterizan aquí por unidades heterogéneas que interactúan entre ellas, con trayectorias no-lineales, retroalimentaciones positivas, co-creación de regularidades, no-ergodicidad del sistema y constante evolución. De manera particular, se analizan los sistemas financieros y urbanos como ejemplos de problemas económicos que presentan estas características. *** This article presents a general discussion of some of the reasons for believing that an economy would be better framed in the theory of complex (organic) systems than in the theory of mechanical systems of the dominant neoclassical school. Complex systems are characterized here by heterogeneous units that interact with each other, with non-linear trajectories, positive feedbacks, co-creation of regularities, non-ergodicity of the system and constant evolution. Financial and urban systems are analyzed as examples of economic problems that present these characteristics.
    Keywords: economía del mundo real, desequilibrio, toma colectiva de decisiones
    JEL: B59 D5 D79
    Date: 2021–10–01
  10. By: Kiyoshi Kanazawa; Didier Sornette
    Abstract: Hawkes point processes are first-order non-Markovian stochastic models of intermittent bursty dynamics with applications to physical, seismic, epidemic, biological, financial, and social systems. While accounting for positive feedback loops that may lead to critical phenomena in complex systems, the standard linear Hawkes process only describes excitative phenomena. To describe the co-existence of excitatory and inhibitory effects (or negative feedbacks), extensions involving nonlinear dependences of the intensity as a function of past activity are needed. However, such nonlinear Hawkes processes have been found hitherto to be analytically intractable due to the interplay between their non-Markovian and nonlinear characteristics, with no analytical solutions available. Here, we present various exact and robust asymptotic solutions to nonlinear Hawkes processes using the field master equation approach. We report explicit power law formulas for the steady state intensity distributions $P_{\mathrm{ss}}(\lambda)\propto \lambda^{-1-a}$, where the tail exponent $a$ is expressed analytically as a function of parameters of the nonlinear Hawkes models. We present three robust interesting characteristics of the nonlinear Hawkes process: (i) for one-sided positive marks (i.e., in the absence of inhibitory effects), the nonlinear Hawkes process can exhibit any power law relation either as intermediate asymptotics ($a\leq 0$) or as true asymptotics ($a>0$) by appropriate model selection; (ii) for distribution of marks with zero mean (i.e., for balanced excitatory and inhibitory effects), the Zipf law ($a\approx 1$) is universally observed for a wide class of nonlinear Hawkes processes with fast-accelerating intensity map; (iii) for marks with a negative mean, the asymptotic power law tail becomes lighter with an exponent increasing above 1 ($a>1$) as the mean mark becomes more negative.
    Date: 2021–10
  11. By: Kiyoshi Kanazawa; Didier Sornette
    Abstract: The origin(s) of the ubiquity of Zipf's law (an inverse power law form for the probability density function (PDF) with exponent $1+1$) is still a matter of fascination and investigation in many scientific fields from linguistic, social, economic, computer sciences to essentially all natural sciences. In parallel, self-excited dynamics is a prevalent characteristic of many systems, from seismicity, financial volatility and financial defaults, to sociology, consumer behaviors, computer sciences, The Internet, neuronal discharges and spike trains in biological neuron networks, gene expression and even criminology. Motivated by financial and seismic modelling, we bring the two threads together by introducing a general class of nonlinear self-excited point processes with fast-accelerating intensities as a function of "tension". Solving the corresponding master equations, we find that a wide class of such nonlinear Hawkes processes have the PDF of their intensities described by Zipf's law on the condition that (i) the intensity is a fast-accelerating function of tension and (ii) the distribution of the point fertilities is symmetric. This unearths a novel mechanism for Zipf's law, providing a new understanding of its ubiquity.
    Date: 2021–01
  12. By: Danial Ludwig; Victor M. Yakovenko
    Abstract: The first part of this paper is a brief survey of the approaches to economic inequality based on ideas from statistical physics and kinetic theory. These include the Boltzmann kinetic equation, the time-reversal symmetry, the ergodicity hypothesis, entropy maximization, and the Fokker-Planck equation. The origins of the exponential Boltzmann-Gibbs distribution and the Pareto power law are discussed in relation to additive and multiplicative stochastic processes. The second part of the paper analyzes income distribution data in the USA for the time period 1983-2018 using a two-class decomposition. We present overwhelming evidence that the lower class (more than 90% of the population) is described by the exponential distribution, whereas the upper class (about 4% of the population in 2018) by the power law. We show that the significant growth of inequality during this time period is due to the sharp increase in the upper-class income share, whereas relative inequality within the lower class remains constant. We speculate that the expansion of the upper-class population and income shares may be due to increasing digitization and non-locality of the economy in the last 40 years.
    Date: 2021–10
  13. By: Emanuele Citera (Department of Economics, New School for Social Research)
    Abstract: This paper attempts to develop a theory of statistical equilibrium based on an entropy-constrained framework, that allow us to explain the distribution of stock returns over different market trends. By making use of the Quantal Response Statistical Equilibrium model (Scharfenaker and Foley, 2017), we recover the cross-sectional distribution of daily returns of individual company listed the S&P 500, over the period 1988-2019. We then make inference on the frequency distributions of returns by studying them over bull markets, bear markets and corrections. The results of the model shed light on the microscopic as well as macroscopic behavior of the stock market, in addition to provide insights in terms of stock returns distribution.
    Keywords: Stock returns, statistical equilibrium, information theory, stock market, maximum entropy
    JEL: C10 C70 D84 G10 G40
    Date: 2021–10
  14. By: Ettore Gallo (Department of Economics, New School for Social Research)
    Abstract: The paper provides an analytical solution to the differential equation that regulates the motion of the neo-Kaleckian model in the short run. After presenting a simple open economy neo-Kaleckian model with government activity, the paper analytically derives an expression for the time of adjustment, defined as the time required for the system to make a k-percent adjustment from one steady-state to another. The solution shows that there is an inverse relationship between the strength of the Keynesian stability condition and the the time of adjustment. Last, the model is calibrated for the US, showing that vicinity of the new equilibrium is reached after a period of about 4 quarters. By formally analyzing the out-of-equilibrium trajectory of the neo-Kaleckian model, this contribution moves away from the method of comparative dynamics and provides a historical-time representation of the model's traverse.
    Keywords: Neo-Kaleckian Model, time, adjustment period, traverse, effective demand, growth, distribution
    Date: 2021–10
  15. By: Jean-Luc Gaffard (OFCE Sciences-Po; Université Côte d'Azur; GREDEG CNRS; Institut Universitaire de France)
    Abstract: Les théories économiques sont, le plus souvent, atemporelles ou inter-temporelles. Ce sont des théories de l'équilibre, un équilibre défini par des données dites réelles, préférences et technologies. Elles reposent sur la croyance en l'existence actuelle ou future d'un monde dénué de contradictions. Elles font de la neutralité de la monnaie et de la finance ou de leur disparition un objectif à atteindre. Ce faisant elles ignorent aussi bien l'instabilité intrinsèque des économies de marché que leur possible résilience. Le regard du philosophe Albert Camus nous invite à suivre une autre démarche, celle qui vise à reconnaître l'inévitabilité des contradictions en même temps que la nécessité d'y survivre. Une narration appropriée serait de reconnaître l'ambivalence de la monnaie, de la dette et de la finance, dans le but de promouvoir un esprit de mesure à même de prévenir le déchirement des contraires.
    Keywords: Contradiction, équilibre, instabilité, mesure, monnaie
    Date: 2021–10
  16. By: Aurelio Patelli; Lorenzo Napolitano; Giulio Cimini; Andrea Gabrielli
    Abstract: Using ideas and tools of complexity science we design a holistic measure of \textit{Scientific Fitness}, encompassing the scientific knowledge, capabilities and competitiveness of a research system. We characterize the temporal dynamics of Scientific Fitness and R\&D expenditures at the geographical scale of nations, highlighting patterns of similar research systems, and showing how developing nations (China in particular) are quickly catching up the developed ones. Down-scaling the aggregation level of the analysis, we find that even developed nations show a considerable level of inequality in the Scientific Fitness of their internal regions. Further, we assess comparatively how the competitiveness of each geographic region is distributed over the spectrum of research sectors. Overall, the Scientific Fitness represents the first high quality estimation of the scientific strength of nations and regions, opening new policy-making applications for better allocating resources, filling inequality gaps and ultimately promoting innovation.
    Date: 2021–10
  17. By: Fana Marta (European Commission – JRC); Giangregorio Luca (University Pompeu Fabra)
    Abstract: The paper studies the determinants of wage differentials over time within jobs in France, detailing the contribution of different set of explanatory factors by means of a Recentred Influence Function, to estimate the effect of a set of covariates at different point of the wage distribution. We simultaneously test the contribution of tasks performed by workers and organisational methods at the firm level, labour market institutions and individual characteristics. We do so by exploiting a unique database at the worker level, the French Enquête Complémentaire Emploi: Conditions de travail, between 2005 and 2016, which covers also monthly wages. Main findings support the hypothesis according to which wages differentials along the wage distribution are almost entirely explained by contractual and work arrangements rather than tasks and organisational practices. Overall evidence run against the main argument of the Routine Bias Technical Change hypothesis.
    Keywords: wage differentials, Recentred Influence Function, Routine Bias Technical Change
    Date: 2021–09
  18. By: Bichler, Shimshon; Nitzan, Jonathan
    Abstract: This note contextualizes the ongoing U.S. policy shift toward greater ‘regulation’ of large corporations. Cory Doctorow and Blair Fix are optimistic about this shift. We doubt it.
    Keywords: capital as power,dominant capital,government,mode of power,policy,regulation,United States
    JEL: P16 P26 P48 I18 K2 L
    Date: 2021
  19. By: Cubides Kovacsics, M.I.; Santos, W.; Siegmann, K.A.
    Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare and exacerbates the existing insecurities of sex workers, a highly stigmatised, often criminalised and economically precarious group of workers. In the Netherlands, sex workers continue to experience different forms of violence despite the occupation’s legalisation, making it a ‘profession in limbo’. This paper therefore seeks to formulate answers to the questions: What are sex workers’ everyday experiences of (in)security? And: How has the COVID-19 pandemic influenced these? Given sex workers’ historical exclusion from policy formulation, we engage with these questions through collaborative research based on semi-structured interviews with sex workers in The Hague. Our analysis reveals a stark mismatch between the insecurities that sex workers’ experience and the concerns enshrined in the regulatory environment. While the municipality’s regulation of the sex industry focuses on sexually transmitted infections (STIs), occupational safety and health issues that sex workers experience also include psychological problems, insufficient hygiene in the workplace and the risk of violent clients. Besides, income insecurity is a key concern for sex workers. The decline in legal workspaces during the past two decades has not translated into higher service rates. Net earnings are further reduced when window operators pass on the risks of illness or damage to sex workers. Furthermore, operators act as powerful gatekeepers of access to remunerative employment. Here, sex workers identify gender-based discrimination with resulting more severe employment and income insecurities for transwomen and male sex workers. This legal liminality is enabled not only by the opaque legal status of sex work in the Netherlands, but also by the gendering of official regulation. Our study mirrors research from the Netherlands and beyond that documents sex workers’ widespread exclusion from COVID-19 support packages. Over and beyond this, we find that immigration status intersects with and mediates these exclusionary processes. We conclude that, firstly, to effectively address the insecurities that sex workers experience and fear, regulation needs to shift from its current criminal law and public health focus to a labour approach. Secondly, over and above such decriminalization, policies and civil society actors alike need to address the gender and sexual hierarchies that underpin sex worker stigma as well as migrants’ discrimination which have come out as powerful mediators of sex workers’ insecurities.
    Keywords: Biopolitics, collaborative research, gender, insecurities, intersectionality, labour approach, legal liminality, the Netherlands, sex work
    Date: 2021–09–29

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