nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2006‒11‒04
nine papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Chicago

  1. What Has Mattered to Economics Since 1970 By Han Kim, E; Morse, Adair; Zingales, Luigi
  2. David Laidler on Monetarism By Michael Bordo; Anna J. Schwartz
  3. Setenta años de la Teoría general de Keynes. Una visión crítica. By Fernando Méndez Ibisate
  4. Homotopy Methods to Compute Equilibria in Game Theory By Herings P. Jean-Jacques; Peeters Ronald
  5. You Cannot be Serious: The Conceptual Innovator as Trickster By David Galenson
  6. The Origin of Utility By De Fraja, Gianni
  7. Discrete Colonel Blotto and General Lotto Games By Sergiu Hart
  8. Valuing Ecosystem Services: A New Paradigm Shift By Pamela Kaval
  9. Behavioural Theories of the Business Cycle By Jaimovich, Nir; Rebelo, Sérgio

  1. By: Han Kim, E; Morse, Adair; Zingales, Luigi
    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.
    Keywords: citations; innovations in economics
    JEL: A11 B20 O33
    Date: 2006–10
  2. By: Michael Bordo; Anna J. Schwartz
    Abstract: David Laidler has been a major player in the development of the monetarist tradition. As the monetarist approach lost influence on policy makers he kept defending the importance of many of its principles. In this paper we survey and assess the impact on monetary economics of Laidler's work on the demand for money and the quantity theory of money; the transmission mechanism on the link between money and nominal income; the Phillips Curve; the monetary approach to the balance of payments; and monetary policy.
    JEL: E00 E50
    Date: 2006–10
  3. By: Fernando Méndez Ibisate
    Date: 2006
  4. By: Herings P. Jean-Jacques; Peeters Ronald (METEOR)
    Abstract: This paper presents a complete survey of the use of homotopy methods in game theory.Homotopies allow for a robust computation of game-theoretic equilibria and their refinements. Homotopies are also suitable to compute equilibria that are selected by variousselection theories. We present all relevant techniques underlying homotopy algorithms.We give detailed expositions of the Lemke-Howson algorithm and the Van den Elzen-Talman algorithm to compute Nash equilibria in 2-person games, and the Herings-Vanden Elzen, Herings-Peeters, and McKelvey-Palfrey algorithms to compute Nash equilibriain general n-person games.
    Keywords: operations research and management science;
    Date: 2006
  5. By: David Galenson
    Abstract: In 1917, when the American Society of Independent Artists refused to exhibit a porcelain urinal that Marcel Duchamp had submitted to them as a sculpture, a friend of Duchamp's wrote : "There are those who anxiously ask: 'Is he serious or is he joking?' Perhaps he is both!" Duchamp's behavior - making a provocative and radically innovative artistic gesture, then declining to explain his motives in the face of accusations that this was a hoax - became a model that subsequently inspired a series of iconoclastic young conceptual innovators. These include many of the most important artists of the twentieth century, and their line of descent runs from Joseph Beuys, Andy Warhol, Yves Klein, and Piero Manzoni to Gilbert & George, Jeff Koons, Tracey Emin and Damien Hirst. The ambiguity of these artists' actions has triggered heated and persistent debates over the sincerity of their work, which have increased the effectiveness of the work's attacks on existing artistic conventions at the same time that they have advanced the artists' reputations and careers. The model of the conceptual artist as trickster is a novel feature of the innovative conceptual art of the past century, and it has produced a type of conceptual art that is more personal than nearly all other forms of art: we can never look at their work without thinking not only of their ideas - what is the artistic significance of a manufactured object purchased at a hardware store, or a silkscreen of a photograph taken from a magazine - but also of their attitudes - was Fountain or Fat Chair really intended to be taken seriously?
    Date: 2006–10
  6. By: De Fraja, Gianni
    Abstract: This paper proposes an explanation for the universal human desire for increasing consumption. It holds that it was moulded in evolutionary times by a mechanism known to biologists as sexual selection, whereby a certain trait - observable consumption - is used by members of one sex to signal their unobservable characteristics valuable to members of the opposite sex. It then goes on to show that the standard economics problem of utility maximisation is formally equivalent to the standard biology problem of the maximisation of individual fitness, the ability to pass genes to future generations.
    Keywords: Darwin; natural selection; sexual selection; utility
    JEL: D63 I28
    Date: 2006–10
  7. By: Sergiu Hart
    Date: 2006–10–27
  8. By: Pamela Kaval (University of Waikato)
    Abstract: The ways in which economists value natural resources has been, and continues to be, a constantly evolving process. At first, only transactions that took place in the marketplace were considered. However, it was not long until it was realised that this concept was an incomplete way to value natural resources and hence the concept of non-market valuation was introduced. These non-market valuation methodologies prevailed for about 50 or 60 years, but, at the present time, it is being realised that the current methodologies are incomplete and it is time for another new paradigm shift. The market and non-market valuation calculations currently used only include anthropocentric (human related) values and have omitted ecocentric ecosystem service values such as the pollination of crops that takes place by bees and flies. The question we are posed with now is how to calculate the true value for ecosystem services in given this new paradigm shift?
    Keywords: ecosystem services; non-market valuation; consumer surplus
    JEL: Q57
    Date: 2006–10–15
  9. By: Jaimovich, Nir; Rebelo, Sérgio
    Abstract: We explore the business cycle implications of expectation shocks and of two well-known psychological biases, optimism and overconfidence. The expectations of optimistic agents are biased toward good outcomes, while overconfident agents overestimate the precision of the signals that they receive. Both expectation shocks and overconfidence can increase business-cycle volatility, while preserving the model's properties in terms of comovement, and relative volatilities. In contrast, optimism is not a useful source of volatility in our model.
    Keywords: business cycles; expectations; optimism; overconfidence
    JEL: E3
    Date: 2006–10

This nep-hpe issue is ©2006 by Erik Thomson. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.