nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2011‒08‒15
eighteen papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Manitoba

  1. G. Th. Guilbaud et la théorie du choix social By Bernard Monjardet
  2. The Influence of Irving Fisher on Milton Friedman’s Monetary Economics By Michael D. Bordo; Hugh Rockoff
  3. "The Political Business Cycle: New Evidence from the Nixon Tapes" By Burton A. Abrams; James L. Butkiewicz
  4. How to end to the debt crisis in one month By Punabantu, Siize
  5. Econophysics: A Brief Review of Historical Development, Present Status and Future Trends By B. G. Sharma; Sadhana Agrawal; Malti Sharma; D. P. Bisen; Ravi Sharma
  6. Uniform profit ratios By Kakarot-Handtke, Egmont
  7. Economic Returns to Education: What We Know, What We Don’t Know, and Where We Are Going – Some Brief Pointers By Matt Dickson; Colm Harmon
  8. Structuralist macroeconomics and new developmentalism By Pereira, Luiz C. Bresser (Luiz Carlos Bresser)
  9. Modernidade, pós-modernidade e neoliberalismo By Pereira, Luiz C. Bresser (Luiz Carlos Bresser)
  10. A taxa de câmbio no centro da teoria do desenvolvimento By Pereira, Luiz C. Bresser (Luiz Carlos Bresser)
  11. To game or not to game: teaching transportation planning with board games By Arthur Huang; David Levinson
  12. Evolving to the Impatience Trap: The Example of the Farmer-Sheriff Game By David K Levine; Salvatore Modica; Federico Weinschelbaum; Felipe Zurita
  13. Emotions, Sanctions and Cooperation By Mateus Joffily; David Masclet; Charles N. Noussair; Marie-Claire Villeval
  14. Upgrading or Downgrading? \ Framing Effects in Online Shopping Environments \ By Nozomi NAKAJIMA
  15. Limited Rationality and Strategic Interaction: A Probabilistic Multi-Agent Model By Yves Ortiz; Martin schüle
  16. "Keynesian Fiscal Stimulus: What Have We Learned from the Great Recession?" By Laurence Seidman
  17. Path dependence in public-good games By Lisa Bruttel; Tim Friehe
  18. Lies and Biased Evaluation: A Real-Effort Experiment By Rosaz, Julie; Villeval, Marie Claire

  1. By: Bernard Monjardet (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - Paris I, CAMS - Centre d'analyse et de mathématique sociale - CNRS : UMR8557 - Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS))
    Abstract: En 1952, un an après la parution du livre d'Arrow Social Choice and Individual Values, G.Th. Guilbaud (1912-2006) publiait dans la revue Économie Appliquée un article de 50 pages intitulé Les théories de l'intérêt général et le problème logique de l'agrégation. Dans ce texte -malheureusement trop peu connu- Guilbaud, outre qu'il sortait de l'oubli l'Essai sur l'application de l'analyse à la probabilité des décisions rendues à la pluralité des voix de Condorcet dont il dévoilait l'intérêt, apportait de remarquables contributions qui en font le précurseur de plusieurs développements ultérieurs de la théorie du choix social. J'examine ici ces différentes contributions et leurs caractères précurseurs.
    Keywords: Agrégation, agrégation des jugements, domaine Condorcéen jeu simple, treillis distributif, théorème d'Arow, ultrafiltre.
    Date: 2011–07
  2. By: Michael D. Bordo; Hugh Rockoff
    Abstract: This paper examines the influence of Irving Fisher’s writings on Milton Friedman’s work in monetary economics. We focus first on Fisher’s influences in monetary theory (the quantity theory of money, the Fisher effect, Gibson’s Paradox, the monetary theory of business cycles, and the Phillips Curve, and empirics, e.g. distributed lags.). Then we discuss Fisher and Friedman's views on monetary policy and various schemes for monetary reform (the k% rule, freezing the monetary base, the compensated dollar, a mandate for price stability, 100% reserve money, and stamped money.) Assessing the influence of an earlier economist's writings on that of later scholars is a challenge. As a science progresses the views of its earlier pioneers are absorbed in the weltanschauung. Fisher's Purchasing Power of Money as well as the work of Pigou and Marshall were the basic building blocks for later students of monetary economics. Thus, the Chicago School of the 1930s absorbed Fisher's approach, and Friedman learned from them. However, in some salient aspects of Friedman's work we can clearly detect a major direct influence of Fisher's writings on Friedman's. Thus, for example with the buildup of inflation in the 1960s Friedman adopted the Fisher effect and Fisher's empirical approach to inflationary expectations into his analysis. Thus, Fisher's influence on Friedman was both indirect through the Chicago School and direct. Regardless of the weight attached to the two influences, Fisher' impact on Friedman was profound.
    JEL: B21 B31 N10
    Date: 2011–08
  3. By: Burton A. Abrams (Department of Economics,University of Delaware); James L. Butkiewicz (Department of Economics,University of Delaware)
    Abstract: Drawing from the personal tape recordings made during the presidency of Richard Nixon, we uncover and report in this paper new evidence that Nixon manipulated Arthur Burns and the Federal Reserve Bank into creating a political business cycle that helped secure Nixon’s reelection victory in 1972. Nixon understood the risks that his desired monetary policy imposed, but chose to trade longer-term economic costs to the economy for his own short-term political benefit.
    Keywords: Monetary Policy; Political Business Cycle
    JEL: E5 E3 E58
    Date: 2011
  4. By: Punabantu, Siize
    Abstract: The modern economic theory implemented today is inherently flawed. Unfortunately these flaws are not apparent in contemporary economic theory which is built on the idea that scarcity is an ever present condition; an approach referred to as scarce resource theory (SRT) in operating level economics. The consequence of this is that leaders around the world and the governments they oversee today are being misled by the very fundamental approaches in contemporary economic theory they are advised will protect their industries and citizens.
    Keywords: Scarcity; banking; credit creation; banks; resource creation; implosion; wobble effect; economic thought; poverty; wealth; equation of exchange; money; price; mark-up; cost plus pricing; rationality; operating level economics; economic growth; expenditure fallacy; paradox; economic operating system
    JEL: E12 D11 E42 E31 D10 E50 H63
    Date: 2011–08–09
  5. By: B. G. Sharma; Sadhana Agrawal; Malti Sharma; D. P. Bisen; Ravi Sharma
    Abstract: The conventional economic approaches explore very little about the dynamics of the economic systems. Since such systems consist of a large number of agents interacting nonlinearly they exhibit the properties of a complex system. Therefore the tools of statistical physics and nonlinear dynamics has been proved to be very useful the underlying dynamics of the system. In this paper we introduce the concept of the multidisciplinary field of econophysics, a neologism that denotes the activities of Physicists who are working on economic problems to test a variety of new conceptual approaches deriving from the physical science and review the recent developments in the discipline and possible future trends.
    Date: 2011–08
  6. By: Kakarot-Handtke, Egmont
    Abstract: The equalization of profit rates as the outcome of free competition is one of the oldest tenets in theoretical economics. Being intuitively convincing its premises and implications, though, are not well defined. As Walras put it: ‘To state a theory is one thing; to prove it is another.’ First of all a consistent concept of profit is required. In the present paper the structural axiom set is taken as premise. Thereof the determinants of profit and the profit ratio follow. This makes it possible to definitively state the conditions for uniform profit ratios in a hierarchical market structure.
    Keywords: New framework of concepts; Structure-centric; Axiom set; Financial profit; Competitive structure; Numéraire
    JEL: D46
    Date: 2011–08–08
  7. By: Matt Dickson (UCD Geary Institute, University College Dublin CMPO, University of Bristol); Colm Harmon (UCD Geary Institute, University College Dublin Research School of Economics, Australian National University IZA, Bonn)
    Abstract: The estimation of the economic return to education has perhaps been one of the predominant areas of analysis in applied economics for over 50 years. In this short note we consider some of the recent directions taken by the literature, and also some of the blockages faced by both science and policymakers in pushing forward some key issues. This serves by way of introduction to a set of papers for a special issue of the Economics of Education Review.
    Keywords: Returns to education, education policy
    JEL: J08 J30 J38 C21
    Date: 2011–08–08
  8. By: Pereira, Luiz C. Bresser (Luiz Carlos Bresser)
    Abstract: This paper, first, presents some basic ideas and models of a structuralist development macroeconomics that complements and actualizes the thought of structuralist development economics that was dominant between the 1940s and the 1960s including in the World Bank. The new approach focus on the relation between the exchange rate and economic growth, and develops three interrelated models: the tendency to the overvaluation of the exchange, the critique of growth with foreign savings, and a model of the Dutch disease based on the existence of two exchange rate equilibriums: the “current” and the “industrial” equilibrium. Second, it summarizes “new developmentalism” – a sum of growth policies based on these models and on the experience of fast growing Asian countries
    Date: 2011–08–04
  9. By: Pereira, Luiz C. Bresser (Luiz Carlos Bresser)
    Abstract: This paper surveys the recent literature on modernity and on postmodernity and relates them with the neoliberal ideology that for thirty years was dominant in the world. In relation to modernity, it claims that major sociologists were not neoliberal, but their theories depicted a provisory modernity excessively conditioned by the neoliberal years. In relation to postmodernity, it criticizes its excessive relativism and pessimism, as well as their rejection of the great narratives and of the possibility of progress.
    Date: 2011–08–04
  10. By: Pereira, Luiz C. Bresser (Luiz Carlos Bresser)
    Abstract: This paper presents the main ideas of structuralist development macroeconomics – the theory behind new developmentalism. Its focus is on the exchange rate that is positioned for the first time in the core of development economics. Economic theory usually views the exchange rate as a short term problem to be discussed in open macroeconomics. Structuralist development macroeconomics argues that there is in developing countries a tendency to the cyclical overvaluation of the exchange rate caused by the lack of neutralization of the Dutch disease and by excessive capital inflows. In consequence it views the exchange rate as chronically overvalued, and, for that reason, a major obstacle to economic growth. In the development process, the exchange rate has the role of light switch that connects or disconnects the national business enterprises utilizing technology in the world state of the art from world markets
    Date: 2011–08–04
  11. By: Arthur Huang; David Levinson (Nexus (Networks, Economics, and Urban Systems) Research Group, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Minnesota)
    Abstract: Traditional "chalk and talk" teaching in civil engineering has gradually been replaced with the idea of active learning focusing on encouraging students' knowledge discovery with innovative pedagogical methods and tools. One interesting tool is the board game. This research examines the efficacy of adopting transportation board games as a tool in graduate-level transportation planning and transportation economics classes at the Department of Civil Engineering of the University of Minnesota from 2008 to 2010. In these classes, a weekday night was scheduled for playing transportation board games. Students were asked to evaluate the effectiveness of the games on their learning and to write a self-reflective paper about their findings. The majority of the students reveal that their understanding of the planning process, network deployment, and practical issues, and and their ability to form opinion about transportation planning has been improved. Their summaries on the game economy and its implications on planning validate that their understanding obtained from this game process has met the pedagogical goals. Our analysis further shows that students who are moderately/highly visual, sensing, active, or sequential, all else equal, tend to learn more effectively through this approach than those who are not. Overall, this research suggests that properly incorporating board games into the curriculum can enhance students' learning process in transportation planning.
    Keywords: retail clusters, agent-based model, location choice, distribution pattern
    JEL: R2 R4 A23
    Date: 2011
  12. By: David K Levine; Salvatore Modica; Federico Weinschelbaum; Felipe Zurita
    Date: 2011–08–06
  13. By: Mateus Joffily; David Masclet; Charles N. Noussair; Marie-Claire Villeval
    Abstract: We use skin conductance responses and self-reports of hedonic valence to study the emotional basis of cooperation and punishment in a social dilemma. Emotional reaction to free-riding incites individuals to apply sanctions when they are available. The application of sanctions activates a "virtuous emotional circle" that accompanies cooperation. Emotionally aroused cooperators relieve negative emotions when they punish free riders. In response, the free-riders experience negative emotions when punished, and increase their subsequent level of cooperation. The outcome is an increased level of contribution that becomes the new standard or norm. For a given contribution level, individuals attain higher levels of shared satisfaction when sanctioning institutions are in place.<p> Document available soon. <P>Dans cette étude, nous avons utilisé des mesures physiologiques de conductance électrodermales ainsi que des mesures d’auto déclaration relatives aux émotions dans le cadre d’un jeu de contribution volontaire au financement de biens publics avec opportunité de sanction. Les émotions jouent un rôle à la fois sur les décisions de contribution et de sanction. La réaction émotionnelle à l’observation de comportement opportuniste conduit les agents à sanctionner. En retour, les passagers clandestins font l’expérience d’émotions négatives lorsqu’ils sont sanctionnés et augmentent leur niveau de contribution en conséquence.<p> Document disponible bientôt.
    Keywords: Emotions, Sanctions, Cooperation, Experiment, Skin Conductance Responses, Émotions, sanctions, coopération, expérience, mesures physiologiques de conductance électrodermales
    Date: 2011–01–01
  14. By: Nozomi NAKAJIMA (Graduate School of Economics, Osaka University)
    Abstract: Recent development in behavioral decision theory reveals the important role of decision environment in the consumer's evaluation and choice processes. Often it is referred as "decision framing." Of particular interest is the online shopping environment, where buyers are usually forced to make their decisions under the sellers' (programmed) guidance on their web sites. How can the decision frames constructed in online shopping environment influence consumers' decision making? What should be done to exploit the characteristics of their framed decisions in the design of online shopping environments? In the present study, we considered an online PC shop as an example because it is one of the most popular and typical online shops and it will help us get insights into the consumers' online-framed decision characteristics. Buyers are usually led to specify the configurations of personal computers, i.e., CPU, memory and hard drive size, type of optical drives, etc., taking their preferences and budgets into account. In the course of specification processes, their decisions are framed in some ways and influenced by them. Among other things, the way the choice alternatives are presented (upgrading/ downgrading, etc.), from which buyers are expected to choose, is of special interest because it can be easily controlled by the sellers. Experimental studies were conducted to investigate the influence of some decision frames including the flow of selection process, the number of alternatives, the price intervals of the alternatives, and the default choice settings. The extremeness aversion, the shifts of the reference points, and the tradeoff between utility and economic loss aversion, are the examples of the involved effects. Above all, particular attention was paid to the default choice settings that provide the total prices as well as the reference points. Based on the results of the experiments, a set of theoretical conclusions and managerial implications of default choice settings are discussed.
    Keywords: online shopping, decision framing, pricing, choice model
    Date: 2011–08
  15. By: Yves Ortiz (Study Center Gerzensee); Martin schüle (Institute of Neuroinformatics, University of Zurich and ETH Zurich)
    Abstract: We develop a multi-agent framework based on probabilistic cellular automata theory to describe off-equilibrium dynamics in the context of the economic problem of price adjustment in different strategic situations as investigated experimentally by Fehr and Tyran (2001) and (2008). It is found that the main experimental findings, namely suboptimal aggregate behavior in terms of sluggish adjustment after a fully anticipated money shock, can be reproduced and largely explained by the interaction of sophisticated and naive agents. Furthermore, a range of conceptual issues as e.g. the source of endogenous beliefs on the other players rationality is addressed within our multi-agent framework. We find that, if costs/payoffs act as driver of rational behavior, then endogenous beliefs and consequential aggregate behavior are driven by the particular off-equilibrium time-dependent payoff/cost profile rather than by total off- equilibrium payoffs/costs that naive agents face in the respective strategic situation.
    Date: 2011–08
  16. By: Laurence Seidman (Department of Economics,University of Delaware)
    Abstract: What have we learned from the Great Recession about Keynesian fiscal stimulus? This article contains five sections that develop the following five points: (1) There is confusion about what constitutes Keynesian fiscal stimulus; (2) Economists are deeply divided about fiscal stimulus; (3) A fundamental error has been committed by an influential economist in estimating the recession magnitude of the Keynesian multiplier; (4) A fundamental error has been committed by two influential economists in their analysis of the impact of the 2008 tax rebate on consumption spending; (5) Advocates of fiscal stimulus in recession should support keeping government debt low in prosperity.
    Keywords: fiscal stimulus, fiscal policy, Great Recession
    JEL: E62
    Date: 2011
  17. By: Lisa Bruttel; Tim Friehe
    Abstract: This paper presents experimental evidence that contributions to a public good can be path-dependent for a limited time span. We study a repeated linear public-good game with punishment opportunities. Our data shows that subjects who had experienced a higher marginal return on public-good contributions in rounds 1-10 contributed more to the public good in rounds 11 and 12, even though they faced the same marginal return as the control group in these later rounds. In contrast, di erences in contributions were not significant when comparing subjects bearing the same current costs of punishment points, but having had different costs in the past.
    Keywords: public-good game, team, punishment, path dependence, experiment
    Date: 2011
  18. By: Rosaz, Julie (University of Lyon 2); Villeval, Marie Claire (CNRS, GATE)
    Abstract: This paper presents the results of a laboratory experiment in which workers perform a real-effort task and supervisors report the workers’ performance to the experimenter. The report is non verifiable and determines the earnings of both the supervisor and the worker. We find that not all the supervisors, but at least one third of them bias their report. Both selfish black lies (increasing the supervisor's earnings while decreasing the worker's payoff) and Pareto white lies (increasing the earnings of both) according to Erat and Gneezy (2009)'s terminology are frequent. In contrast, spiteful black lies (decreasing the earnings of both) and altruistic white lies (increasing the earnings of workers but decreasing those of the supervisor) are almost non-existent. The supervisors' second-order beliefs and their decision to lie are highly correlated, suggesting that guilt aversion plays a role.
    Keywords: evaluation, lie-aversion, guilt aversion, self-image, deception, lies, experiments
    JEL: C91 D82 M52
    Date: 2011–07

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