nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2014‒11‒22
nineteen papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Manitoba

  1. Schumpeter and the History of Economic Thought By Estrada, Fernando
  2. Determinacy of Equilibrium in Outcome Game Forms By Litan, Cristian; Marhuenda, Francisco; Sudhölter, Peter
  3. Economics for Economists By Kakarot-Handtke, Egmont
  4. The Profit Theory is False Since Adam Smith. What About the True Distribution Theory? By Kakarot-Handtke, Egmont
  5. Economic Growth Evens-Out Happiness: Evidence from Six Surveys By Andrew E. Clark; Sarah Flèche; Claudia Senik
  6. The Synthesis of Economic Law, Evolution, and History By Kakarot-Handtke, Egmont
  7. A Critical Marxist Simple Approach to Capital Theory By Cavalieri, Duccio
  8. Thinking about Justice By Risse, Mathias
  9. On the Core of Directed Acyclic Graph Games By Balázs Sziklai; Tamás Fleiner; Tamás Solymosi
  10. Beyond Deterrence and Decline. Towards a General Understanding of Peace Economics By Caruso, Raul
  11. The Cult of statistical significance - A Review By Sripad Motiram
  12. Zukunftsangst! Fear of (and hope for) the future and its impact on life satisfaction. By Piper, Alan T.
  13. From degrees of belief to beliefs: Lessons from judgment-aggregation theory By Dietrich, Franz; List, Christian
  14. A Note on the Computation of the Pre-Kernel for Permutation Games By Meinhardt, Holger Ingmar
  15. On the Significance of Humanity's Collective Ownership of the Earth for Immigration By Risse, Mathias
  16. What Have Economists Been Doing for the Last 50 Years? A Text Analysis of Published Academic Research from 1960-2010 By Lea Kosnik
  17. Dishonesty under scrutiny By Jeroen van de Ven; Marie Claire Villeval
  18. Sobre las Curvas de Engel. Una Breve Revisión de su Evolución Histórica By Rodrigo García Arancibia
  19. Are facets of homo economicus associated with higher earnings and happiness By Shoko Yamane; Hiroyasu Yoneda; Yoshiro Tsutsui

  1. By: Estrada, Fernando
    Abstract: Schumpeter's The History of Economic Analysis, is a tour de force of scholarship. The display of erudition is truly unbelievable. How may one man and then digested have acquired much knowledge? Not only does the History offer two thousand years of economics, from Aristotle to Paul Samuelson, But also, it expertly almost ranges over all the other social sciences, history and belles letters as well. For more that 1,100 pages on the prose flows in a way That one has come to expect from Schumpeter the fluent style, the vivid analogy, the striking metaphor, the arresting aside. Our goal is to present the main thoughts of Schumpeter on the complex relationships between Economic History and Epistemology of Science. This design has three aspects that interest us: (a) its amplitude to conceive the economy as part of the overall development of scientific knowledge; (B) its relevance and the Applied examples used by the author; (C) its methodological facing tremendous problems facing the economy with the other sciences.
    Keywords: Schumpeter, Economics History, Epistemology, Econometric, Industrial.
    JEL: B13 B15 B31 B41 O31
    Date: 2014
  2. By: Litan, Cristian (Department of Statistics, Forecasting, Mathematics); Marhuenda, Francisco (Department of Economics); Sudhölter, Peter (Department of Business and Economics)
    Abstract: We show the generic finiteness of the number of probability distributions on outcomes induced by Nash equilibria for two-person game forms such that either (i) one of the players has no more than two strategies or (ii) both of the players have three strategies, and (iii) for outcome game forms with three players, each with at most two strategies. Finally, we exhibit an example of a game form with three outcomes and three players for which the Nash equilibria of the associated game induce a continuum of payoffs for an open non-empty set of utility profiles.
    Keywords: Outcome game form; Completely mixed Nash equilibrium; Generic finiteness
    JEL: C72
    Date: 2014–11–05
  3. By: Kakarot-Handtke, Egmont
    Abstract: The characteristic capability of science – to turn whatever it might touch into knowledge – seems to have eluded economics. Currently, economists do not understand how the economy works. To get out of the cul-de-sac requires a paradigm shift. It consists in replacing behavioral axioms by structural axioms. The subject matter of theoretical economics is not human behavior but systemic behavior. From the structural analysis follows a new Law of Supply and Demand and a new Profit Law for the economy as a whole. The conventional supply-demand-equilibrium approach is refuted. This implies that the reliance on the spontaneous order metaphor is unfounded.
    Keywords: new framework of concepts; structure-centric; axiom set; Profit Law; Law of Supply and Demand; self-adjustment
    JEL: B49 B59 D03 D40
    Date: 2014–11–03
  4. By: Kakarot-Handtke, Egmont
    Abstract: All popular schools lack a consistent profit theory. Economists have no true conception of the most important phenomenon in their universe. This methodological defect persists since Adam Smith. Therefore, the theories of income and wealth distribution are wrong by logical implication. If the conclusions of a theory do not find any counterpart in reality the fault lies in the premises. In order to rectify distribution theory it is necessary to substitute the conventional subjective-behavioral axioms by objective-structural axioms. A major result of the present paper is that distribution is not governed by marginal productivity but by the distributed profit ratio.
    Keywords: new framework of concepts, structure-centric, axiom set, income distribution, wealth distribution, inequality
    JEL: B49 B59 D30 E25
    Date: 2014–10–21
  5. By: Andrew E. Clark; Sarah Flèche; Claudia Senik
    Abstract: In spite of the great U-turn that saw income inequality rise in Western countries in the 1980s, happiness inequality has fallen in countries that have experienced income growth (but not in those that did not). Modern growth has reduced the share of both the "very unhappy" and the "perfectly happy". Lower happiness inequality is found both between and within countries, and between and within individuals. Our cross-country regression results argue that the extension of various public goods helps to explain this greater happiness homogeneity. This new stylised fact arguably comes as a bonus to the Easterlin paradox, offering a somewhat brighter perspective for developing countries.
    Keywords: Happiness, inequality, economic growth, development, Easterlin paradox
    JEL: D31 D6 I3 O15
    Date: 2014–10
  6. By: Kakarot-Handtke, Egmont
    Abstract: It has long been criticized that history is almost entirely absent from orthodox economics. This deficiency is due to the fact that equilibrium and time make an odd couple. Because equilibrium is one of the crucial hard-core propositions of the research program it cannot be abandoned. This impedes the treatment of time in a methodologically acceptable manner. The orthodox approach is based on indefensible axioms which are in this paper replaced by objective structural axioms. This enables the synthesis of timeless economic laws, randomness, and goal-oriented human action, which are the essential elements of a formally consistent historical account.
    Keywords: new framework of concepts; structure-centric; axiom set; cumulative causation; First Economic Law; Period Core; propensity function
    JEL: B49 B59 E17
    Date: 2014–09–24
  7. By: Cavalieri, Duccio
    Abstract: This essay provides a simple, non-technical reformulation of Marx’s theoretical treatment of value and capital. It implies the abandonment of the ‘pure’ labour theory of value and of the ‘new value’ equality between the net product of the economy and the living labour employed in production of gross output, and a development of the different theoretical perspective outlined by the mature Marx. A correct method for converting quantities of labour-time in terms of money, which accounts for both explicit and implicit costs, is proposed.
    Keywords: value forms; labour; capital; money; capital theory; critical Marxism; MEV; MELT.
    JEL: B12 B14 B51 D46 E11
    Date: 2014
  8. By: Risse, Mathias (Harvard University)
    Abstract: This paper develops and defends the approach to distributive justice the author presents in his 2012 book On Global Justice. Characteristic of that approach is that the notion of distributive justice is understood as capturing the most stringent moral demands while at the same time being broadly applicable. This is unusual: normally, distributive justice is either understood very stringently, or as broadly applicable, but not both. Immanuel Kant does the former, Ernst Tugendhat does the latter. This paper argues that the author's approach should be preferred to both of those other approaches. One result of this inquiry is also to display the conceptual unity in the author's approach to global justice in terms of different grounds of justice.
    Date: 2014–02
  9. By: Balázs Sziklai (Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences); Tamás Fleiner (Department of Computer Science and Information Theory, Budapest University of Technology and Economics); Tamás Solymosi (Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences)
    Abstract: There lies a network structure between fixed tree and minimum cost spanning tree networks that has not been previously analyzed from a cooperative game theoretic perspective, namely, directed acyclic graph (DAG) networks. In this paper we consider the cost allocation game defined on DAG-networks. We briefly discuss the relation of DAG-games with other network-based cost games. We demonstrate that in general a DAG-game is not concave, even its core might be empty, but we provide an efficiently verifiable condition satisfied by a large class of directed acyclic graphs that is sufficient for balancedness of the associated DAG-game. We introduce a network canonization process and prove various structural results for the core of canonized DAG-games. In particular, we characterize classes of coalitions that have a constant payoff in the core. In addition, we identify a subset of the coalitions that is sufficient to determine the core.
    Keywords: cooperative game theory, directed acyclic graphs, core, acyclic directed Steiner tree
    JEL: C71
    Date: 2014–07
  10. By: Caruso, Raul
    Abstract: The aim of this short article is to provide elements for a general discussion on peace economics and its potential contribution to economics and economic policy. I first present a discussion on deterrence equilibria and consequent allocation of resources. Eventually I expound five economic channels through which military expenditures turn to be detrimental for economic development. Finally some elements to build a framework for a peaceful economic policy are presented.
    Keywords: peace; war; development; military expenditures; butter, guns and ice-cream
    JEL: D74 F51 F55 H56
    Date: 2014–10
  11. By: Sripad Motiram (Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research)
    Abstract: I present a review and extended discussion of The Cult of Statistical Significance: How the Standard Error Costs Us Jobs, Justice and Lives by Deirdre McCloskey and Stephen Ziliak, a work that raises important issues related to the practice of statistics and that has been widely commented upon. For this review, I draw upon several other works on statistics and my personal experiences as a teacher of undergraduate econometrics.
    Keywords: Significance, Standard Error, Application of Statistics, Methodology
    JEL: C1 C12
    Date: 2014–09
  12. By: Piper, Alan T.
    Abstract: The thoughts that an individual has about the future contribute substantially to their life satisfaction in a positive or negative direction. This is a result found via five different methods, some of which control for personality and disposition and the potential endogeneity of thoughts and life satisfaction. The reduction in life satisfaction experienced by individuals who report being pessimistic is greater than that for well-known objective statuses like unemployment. Including individuals’ thoughts about the future substantially increases the explanatory power of standard life satisfaction models. Life satisfaction is made up of objective and subjective factors and methods exist to account for their potential endogeneity to enhance our understanding of well-being. This investigation is an example of such an analysis combining a subjective factor, thoughts about the future (treated as endogenous), with more standard objective factors to aid understanding regarding well-being.
    Keywords: Life Satisfaction, Subjective Well-Being, GMM, Dynamics, Endogeneity, SOEP, ESS.
    JEL: C23 D84 I31
    Date: 2014–10
  13. By: Dietrich, Franz; List, Christian
    Abstract: What is the relationship between degrees of belief and (all-or-nothing) beliefs? Can the latter be expressed as a function of the former, without running into paradoxes? We reassess this “belief-binarization†problem from the perspective of judgmentaggregation theory. Although some similarities between belief binarization and judgment aggregation have been noted before, the literature contains no general study of the implications of aggregation-theoretic impossibility and possibility results for belief binarization. We seek to fill this gap. At the centre of this paper is an impossibility theorem showing that, except in simple cases, there exists no belief-binarization rule satisfying four baseline desiderata (“universal domainâ€, “belief consistency and completenessâ€, “propositionwise independenceâ€, “certainty preservationâ€). We show that this result is a corollary of the judgment-aggregation variant of Arrow’s impossibility theorem and explore several escape routes from it.
    Keywords: subjective probability, yes/no belif, impossibility theorem on binarization, analytic philosophy, judgment aggregation
    JEL: C0 C02 D0 D01 D7 D70 D8 D80 D81 D89
    Date: 2014–08
  14. By: Meinhardt, Holger Ingmar
    Abstract: To determine correctly a non-convex pre-kernel for TU games with more than 4 players can be a challenge full of possible pitfalls, even to the experienced researcher. Parts of the pre-kernel can be easily overlooked. In this note we discuss a method to present the full shape of the pre-kernel for a permutation game as discussed by Solymosi (2014). By using the property in which the pre-kernel is located in the least core for permutation games, the least core can be covered by a small collection of payoff equivalence classes as identified by Meinhardt (2013d) to finally establish the correct shape of the pre-kernel.
    Keywords: Transferable Utility Game: Non-Convex Pre-Kernel: Pre-Kernel Catcher: Convex Analysis: Fenchel-Moreau Conjugation: Indirect Function
    JEL: C63 C71 D63 D74
    Date: 2014–10–18
  15. By: Risse, Mathias (Harvard University)
    Abstract: The author's 2012 book On Global Justice argues that the standpoint of humanity's collective ownership of the earth should be central to reflection on the permissibility of immigration. This standpoint is defended here. A number of political philosophers (Michael Blake, Christopher Wellman, David Miller and others) have recently offered accounts of immigration that tried to do without the kind of global standpoint provided by humanity's collective ownership of the earth. All these attempts fail, and fail because they do not integrate a global standpoint. It has been objected to the author's account that any given generation should be regarded as inheriting both the natural and the societal wealth of humanity. This standpoint is refuted here. We will also engage with Avery Kolers' intriguing approach to territory in terms of ethnogeographic communities.
    Date: 2014–02
  16. By: Lea Kosnik (Department of Economics, University of Missouri-St. Louis)
    Abstract: This paper presents the results of a text based exploratory study of over 20,000 academic articles published in seven top research journals from 1960-2010. The goal is to investigate the general research foci of economists over the last fifty years, how (if at all) they have changed over time, and what trends (if any) can be discerned from a broad body of the top academic research in the field. Of the 19 JEL-code based fields studied in the literature, most have retained a constant level of attention over the time period of this study, however, a notable exception is that of macroeconomics which has undergone a significantly diminishing level of research attention in the last couple of decades, across all the journals under study; at the same time, the “microfoundations” of macroeconomic papers appears to be increasing. Other results are also presented.
    Keywords: Text Analysis, Economics Research, Research Diversity, Topic Analysis.
    JEL: A11 B4
    Date: 2014–09
  17. By: Jeroen van de Ven (ACLE (University of Amsterdam) and Tinbergen Institute. Address: Valckeniersstraat 65-67, 1018 XE Amsterdam, The Netherlands); Marie Claire Villeval (Université de Lyon, Lyon, F-69007, France ; CNRS, GATE Lyon St Etienne,F-69130 Ecully, France)
    Abstract: We investigate how different forms of scrutiny affect dishonesty, using Gneezy’s (2005) deception game. We add a third player whose interests are aligned with those of the sender. We find that lying behavior is not sensitive to revealing the sender’s identity to the observer. The option for observers to communicate with the sender, and the option to reveal the sender’s lies to the receiver also do not affect lying behavior. Even more striking, senders whose identity is revealed to their observer do not lie less when their interests are misaligned with those of the observer.
    Keywords: Deception, lies, dishonesty, social image, experiment
    JEL: C91 D83
    Date: 2014
  18. By: Rodrigo García Arancibia
    Abstract: Resumen: En este ensayo se presentan algunas reflexiones sobre los cambios conceptuales y metodológicos a lo largo del pensamiento económico en los estudios referentes a curvas de Engel (CE).Comenzando por el ‘inductivismo’ bajo un espíritu no paramétrico del trabajo original de Ernst Engel (1895), hasta la posterior inclusión dentro de la teoría del consumidor del programa de investigación neoclásico o mainstream, y la problemática subsiguiente de la búsqueda de una especificación consistente, en términos de la adecuación con la teoría y del ajuste econométrico.Se sostiene que la incorporación de especificaciones no paramétricas va en línea con una mayor flexibilidad postulada para la relación de Engel siguiendo su contribución original. Sin embargo,la forma en que generalmente es planteada sigue persiguiendo su adecuación con algunos o todos los requerimientos para su consistencia en el marco de la teoría del consumidor.
    Keywords: Ernst Engel; Gasto de Hogares; Especificación Econométrica y No Paramétrico.
    JEL: B16 B23 D12
    Date: 2013–06–27
  19. By: Shoko Yamane (Faculty of Economics, Kinki University); Hiroyasu Yoneda (Graduate School and Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Kyoto University); Yoshiro Tsutsui (Faculty of Economics, Konan University)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the individual outcomes of irrational thinking, including paranormality and non-scientific thinking. These modes of thinking are identified by factor analysis from a 2008 survey. Income and happiness are used as measures of performance. Empirical results reveal that both paranormality and non-scientific thinking lower income. While non-scientific thinking lowers happiness, paranormality raises it. Extending the model, we find that higher ability results in higher income and happiness. Self-control only raises happiness. These results suggest that many elements of homo economicus, except paranormality and selfishness, raise economic performance and happiness.
    Keywords: irrational belief; happiness; paranormality; factor analysis; ability
    JEL: D03
    Date: 2014–10

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