nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2005‒07‒25
eleven papers chosen by
Andy Denis
City University

  1. Tratado de Libre Comercio y Barreras No Arancelarias: Un análisis crítico. By Daniel VAUGHAN CARO
  2. Economics research in Canada: A long-run assessment of journal publications By James B. Davies; Matthias Sutter; Martin G. Kocher
  3. The Economics of Workaholism: We Should Not Have Worked on This Paper By Daniel S. Hamermesh; Joel Slemrod
  4. Finance and Growth: A Critical Survey By Alex W. Trew
  5. The Neuroeconomics of Trust By Paul J. Zak
  6. Learning, Institutions, and Economic Performance By Chrysostomos Mantzavinos; Douglas C. North; Syed Shariq
  7. Social Dilemmas, Revisited from a Heuristics Perspective By Christoph Engel
  8. University Funding Systems and their Impact on Research and Teaching: A General Framework By John Beath; Joanna Poyago-Theotoky; David Ulph
  9. The Fallacy of ´Only the Strong Survive´: The Effects of Extrinsic (...) By JULIO DE CASTRO
  10. A comprehensive review of the enterprise systems research By OSWALDO LORENZO
  11. From Zero To Infinity: The Use Of Impact Factors In The Evaluation Of Economic Research In Spain By SALVADOR CARMONA

  1. By: Daniel VAUGHAN CARO
    Abstract: En este documento se presenta una revisión crítica de la literatura acerca de los efectos y cuantificación de las barreras no arancelarias, dentro del marco de las negociaciones de un tratado de libre comercio con Estados Unidos. Para esto, se realiza una revisión de la literatura teórica y empírica, y una revisión histórica de la posición de Estados Unidos y Colombia. Por último, se utiliza un modelo de equilibrio general computable para simular la eliminación de las barreras arancelarias y no arancelarias entre Estados Unidos y Colombia. Se concluye que los modelos de equilibrio general computable sobre estiman los efectos de las BNAs debido principalmente a limitaciones de la metodología utilizada para cuantificar los efectos de las mismas y de los supuestos utilizados para modelar la demanda de importaciones.
    Keywords: Barreras no arancelarias
    Date: 2005–04–04
  2. By: James B. Davies; Matthias Sutter; Martin G. Kocher
    Abstract: We examine the publications of authors affiliated with an economics research institution in Canada in (i) the Top-10 journals in economics according to journals' impact factors, and (ii) the /Canadian Journal of Economics/. We consider all publications in the even years from 1980 to 2000. Canadian economists contributed about 5% of publications in the Top-10 journals and about 55% of publications in the /Canadian Journal of Economics /over this period. We identify the most active research centres and identify trends in their relative outputs over time. Those research centres successful in publishing in the Top-10 journals are found to also dominate the /Canadian Journal of Economics/. Additionally, we present data on authors' Ph.D.-origin, thereby indicating output and its concentration in graduate education.
    Keywords: research in economics, Canadian economics, top journals
    JEL: A11 A14
    Date: 2005–05
  3. By: Daniel S. Hamermesh (University of Texas at Austin, NBER and IZA Bonn); Joel Slemrod (University of Michigan and NBER)
    Abstract: A large literature examines the addictive properties of such behaviors as smoking, drinking alcohol and eating. We argue that for some people addictive behavior may apply to a much more central aspect of economic life: working. Workaholism is subject to the same concerns about the individual as other addictions, is more likely to be a problem of higher-income individuals, and can, under conditions of jointness in the workplace or the household, generate negative spillovers onto individuals around the workaholic. Using the Retirement History Survey and the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, we find evidence that is consistent with the idea that high-income, highly educated people suffer from workaholism with regard to retiring, in that they are more likely to postpone earlier plans for retirement. The theory and evidence suggest that optimal policy involves a more progressive tax system than in the absence of workaholism.
    Keywords: addiction, retirement, labor supply, tax policy
    JEL: J26 H21
    Date: 2005–07
  4. By: Alex W. Trew
    Abstract: This paper surveys the literature on the relationship between finance and growth from a longitudinal, and primarily theoretical, perspective. Important qualifications to the empirical consensus are noted and we consider the prevalence of cross-section econometrics as dominant in shaping the present theoretical consensus. We develop a general model capable of capturing a number of key conclusions from theoretical research. We then trace out the numerical implications of this class of models for time-series growth, as well as outlining ways in which these models might be tested quantitatively for historical congruence. We suggest a reason for the preponderance of theoretical considerations of financial efficiency despite empirical analysis of financial deepness, and how this makes direct comparisons between the theory and empirics of finance and growth difficult. The core implications of many finance and growth theories are shown to be incongruent with the historical record.
    Keywords: finance and growth, endogenous growth, economic history.
    JEL: O11 O16 O40 N23
    Date: 2005–07
  5. By: Paul J. Zak (Claremont Graduate University)
    Abstract: The traditional view in economics is that individuals respond to incentives, but absent strong incentives to the contrary selfishness prevails. Moreover, this “greed is good” approach is deemed “rational” behavior. Nevertheless, in daily interactions and in numerous laboratory studies, a high degree of cooperative behavior prevails—even among strangers. A possible explanation for the substantial amount of “irrational” behavior observed in markets (and elsewhere) is that humans are a highly social species and to an extent value what other humans think of them. This behavior can be termed trustworthiness—cooperating when someone places trust in us. I also analyze the cross-country evidence for environments that produce high or low trust. A number of recent experiments from my lab have demonstrated that the neuroactive hormone oxytocin facilitates trust between strangers, and appears to induce trustworthiness. In rodents, oxytocin has been associated with maternal bonding, pro-social behaviors, and in some species long-term pair bonds, but prior to the work reviewed here, the behavioral effects of oxytocin in humans had not been studied. This presentation discusses the neurobiology of positive social behaviors and how these are facilitated by oxytocin. My experiments show that positive social signals cause oxytocin to be released by the brain, producing an unconscious attachment to a stranger. I also discuss recent research that manipulates oxytocin levels, and functional brain imaging research on trust.
    Keywords: Oxytocin, social capital, neuroeconomics, development, experiments
    JEL: C9
    Date: 2005–07–21
  6. By: Chrysostomos Mantzavinos (Faculty of Economics and Business, Witten/Herdecke University); Douglas C. North (Washington University, St. Louis); Syed Shariq (Institute for International Studies, Stanford University)
    Abstract: In this article, we provide a broad overview of the interplay among cognition, belief systems, and institutions, and how they affect economic performance. We argue that a deeper understanding of institutions’ emergence, their working properties, and their effect on economic and political outcomes should begin from an analysis of cognitive processes. We explore the nature of individual and collective learning, stressing that the issue is not whether agents are perfectly or boundedly rational, but rather how human beings actually reason and choose, individually and in collective settings. We then tie the processes of learning to institutional analysis, providing arguments in favor of what can be characterized as “cognitive institutionalism.” Besides, we show that a full treatment of the phenomenon of path dependence should start at the cognitive level, proceed at the institutional level, and culminate at the economic level.
    Date: 2003–12
  7. By: Christoph Engel (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, Bonn, Germany)
    Abstract: The standard tool for analysing social dilemmas is game theory. They are reconstructed as prisoner dilemma games. This is helpful for understanding the incentive structure. Yet this analysis is based on the classic homo oeconomicus assumptions. In many real world dilemma situations, these assumptions are misleading. A case in point is the contribution of households to climate change. Decisions about using cars instead of public transport, or about extensive air conditioning, are typically not based on ad hoc calculation. Rather, individuals rely on situational heuristics for the purpose. This paper does two things: it offers a model of heuristics, in the interest of making behaviour that is guided by heuristics comparable to behaviour based on rational reasoning. Based on this model, the paper determines the implications for the definition of social dilemmas. In some contexts, the social dilemma vanishes. In other contexts, it must be understood, and hence solved, in substantially different ways.
    Keywords: Heuristic, Social Dilemma, Public Good, Prisoner’s Dilemma
    JEL: A12 A13 C91 D62 H41 K32
  8. By: John Beath (University of St Andrews); Joanna Poyago-Theotoky (University of Loughborough); David Ulph (Inland Revenue)
    Abstract: This paper addresses the following question: how does a higher education funding system influence the trade-off that universities make between research and teaching? We do so by constructing a general model that allows universities to choose actively the quality of their teaching and research when faced with different funding systems. In particular, we derive the feasible sets that face universities under such systems and show how, as the parameters of the system are varied, the nature of the university system itself changes. The “culture” of the university system thus becomes endogenous. This makes the model useful for the analysis of reforms in funding and also for international comparisons.
    Keywords: University funding system, higher education, teaching quality, research quality, research elite.
    JEL: I21 I22
    Date: 2005–04
  9. By: JULIO DE CASTRO (Instituto de Empresa)
    Abstract: (WP 07/04 Clave pdf) According to economic theory, under-performing firms should be selected out of the market. However, research shows that these firms persist, often for long periods of time. In this article we explore the non-firm-performance factors that contribute to the decision to persist with an under-performing firm. Using the escalation of commitment literature we identify seven variables that are associated with the persistence decision. We reconcile the economic and psychological views by finding that the extent to which some of these non-firm-performance factors influence the persistence decision is, in part, dependent upon the owner-managers’ level of extrinsic motivation.
    Date: 2004–03
  10. By: OSWALDO LORENZO (Instituto de Empresa)
    Abstract: (WP 12/04 Clave pdf) Enterprise systems (ES) can be considered as a novel phenomenon for the information system research and other academic fields (e.g. operations and supply chain), which has opened an immense potential and opportunities for research. Although the interest of the scholars on ES is recent, the number of publications is continuously growing since 2000. The aim of this paper is to review a sample of important contributions of the ES works published to date. To do this, the selected works have been classified in four key topics: business implications, technical issues, managerial issues, and implementation issues.
    Keywords: Enterprise systems, Research
    Date: 2004–04
  11. By: SALVADOR CARMONA (Instituto de Empresa)
    Abstract: In the present study, we examine the use of short lists of journals in order to assess research performance in Spain - a country that features a rare combination of a thin and incomplete academic market along with an elite of eminent economists. Our analysis reveals that the implementation of bibliometric tools to produce short lists of journals for assessment purposes entail problems with the statistical significance of cutoff rates, neglect of the interdisciplinary nature of economics, and an inability to track progress in academic markets that move towards internationalization and publications in top-tier, premier outlets.
    Date: 2005–05

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