nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2006‒09‒30
eight papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Chicago

  1. Generalized Utilitarianism and Harsanyi's Partial Observer Theorem By Simon Grant; Atsushi Kajii; Ben Polak; Zvi Safra
  2. L'économie, à la recherche de lois de la nature, ne rencontre finalement que les lois des hommes By Bernard Billaudot; Ghislaine Destais
  3. On the divergence of evolutionary research paths in the past fifty years: a comprehensive bibliometric account By Sandra Tavares Silva; Aurora A.C. Teixeira
  4. Kantian Allocations By John E. Roemer
  5. What Has Mattered to Economics Since 1970 By E. Han Kim; Adair Morse; Luigi Zingales
  6. Economic Influences on Moral Values By Östling, Robert
  7. Monetary reform in times of Charles II (1679-1686): Aspects concerning the issued dispositions. By Cecilia Font de Villanueva
  8. Believing in Economic Theory: Sex, Lies, Evidence, Trust and Ideology By Nathaniel Wilcox

  1. By: Simon Grant; Atsushi Kajii; Ben Polak; Zvi Safra
    Date: 2006–09–22
  2. By: Bernard Billaudot (LEPII - Laboratoire d'Economie de la Production et de l'Intégration Internationale - [CNRS : FRE2664] - [Université Pierre Mendès-France - Grenoble II]); Ghislaine Destais (LEPII - Laboratoire d'Economie de la Production et de l'Intégration Internationale - [CNRS : FRE2664] - [Université Pierre Mendès-France - Grenoble II])
    Abstract: Ce que cherche l'économie dominante sous le terme de loi, c'est la formulation de lois déterministes qui lui confèreraient un statut de science. En prenant en compte le renouvellement qui s'est produit en science dans la façon de concevoir les lois de la nature, notre propos est de montrer en quoi la discipline économie se trompe ainsi d'objectif et comment il est possible de mener une démarche scientifique en économie en s'intéressant aux lois établies par les hommes. Les "lois économiques" sont alors définies comme les régularités observées dans le temps et l'espace que l'on peut rapporter à des règles de droit, ce qui rend compte de leur caractère contingent.
    Keywords: science économique ; loi ; sciences exactes ; économie ; règle
    Date: 2006–09–22
  3. By: Sandra Tavares Silva (CEMPRE, Faculdade de Economia do Porto, Universidade do Porto); Aurora A.C. Teixeira (CEMPRE, Faculdade de Economia do Porto, Universidade do Porto)
    Abstract: This work presents a comprehensive survey on evolutionary economics intending at exploring the main research path and contributions of this theorizing framework using bibliometric methods. This documentation effort is based on a review of the abstracts from articles published in all economic journals gathered from the Econlit database over the past fifty years. Before 1990, the importance of published evolutionary related research is almost negligible. More than 90% of total papers were published after that date. An important point in the analysis is developed around the choices that have been made by evolutionist researchers in terms of formalism versus empiricism. The general perception within evolutionary (and non-evolutionary) researchers is that in this field formalization lags behind the conceptual work. However, as we show in the present paper, formal approaches have a reasonable and increasing share of published papers between 1969 and 2006 (around one-third). In contrast, purely empirical-related works are relatively scarce, involving a meagre and stagnant percentage (7%) of published works for the period 1992 up to 2006. The most important method, however, is the ‘Appreciative’ with approximately half of the articles. In addition, as evolutionary contributions apparently have not converged to an integrated approach, we document the more important paths emergent in this field. Our results show two rather extreme main research strands: ‘History of Economic Thought and Methodology’ (29.0%) and ‘Games’ (18.4%). ‘Development, Environment and Policy’ (14.2%) emerges as the third most frequent category.
    Keywords: evolutionary, methodology, bibliometry, Econlit
    Date: 2006–09
  4. By: John E. Roemer
    Date: 2006–09–22
  5. By: E. Han Kim; Adair Morse; Luigi Zingales
    Abstract: We compile the list of articles published in major refereed economics journals during the last 35 years that have received more than 500 citations. We document major shifts in the mode of contribution and in the importance of different sub-fields: Theory loses out to empirical work, and micro and macro give way to growth and development in the 1990s. While we do not witness any decline in the primacy of production in the United States over the period, the concentration of institutions within the U.S. hosting and training authors of the highly-cited articles has declined substantially.
    JEL: A11 B20 O33
    Date: 2006–09
  6. By: Östling, Robert (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics)
    Abstract: This paper extends standard consumer theory to account for endogenous moral motivation. Building on cognitive dissonance theory, I show how moral values are affected by changes in prices and income. The key insight is that changes in prices and income that lead to higher consumption of an immoral good also affect the moral values held by the consumer so that the good will be considered as less immoral.
    Keywords: Consumer theory; moral values; endogenous preferences; cognitive dissonance; self-serving bias
    JEL: D11
    Date: 2006–09–21
  7. By: Cecilia Font de Villanueva
    Abstract: During the reign of Carlos II drastic monetary reform was carried out, which once and for all ended the tremendous monetary instability that took place in Castile throughout the whole Seventeenth century. Between 1680 and 1686, six monetary rules were adopted. The path chosen to attain the stability was not easy due to the state of the coinage. The reform tried to provide the Kingdom with a currency properly valued for which it was later decreed the devaluation and then the subsequent removal of the circulating copper coins. Simultaneously, along with the gathered metal, new purely copper made coins were ordered with adjusted value. Once the stability of the lesser value coinage was obtained, the reach of the reform was extended to the gold and silver pieces to equate them to the new monetary values.
    Date: 2006–09
  8. By: Nathaniel Wilcox (Department of Economics, University of Houston)
    Abstract: In many empirical studies, ideology significantly predicts political outcomes, even after controlling for interests. This may reflect ideology’s influence on descriptive beliefs about the workings of the economic world. We investigate these beliefs about supply and demand theory, using survey methods and an experimental demonstration. As expected, relatively liberal respondents have more skeptical ex-ante beliefs (before viewing the experiment) about the theory. Surprisingly, however, relatively conservative respondents update beliefs (after viewing the experiment) so much less strongly that they have more skeptical ex-post beliefs. We explore and discount alternative explanations for these relationships between ideology and beliefs.
    Date: 2004–10

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