nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2017‒10‒22
eleven papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Manitoba

  1. Capital as a Social Process: A Marxian Perspective. By Miguel D. Ramirez
  2. Games of Threats By Elon Kohlberg; Abraham Neyman
  3. Politics Case Study: Bad News in Good Times of General Musharraf Presidency: Economics versus Politics By Mamoon, Dawood
  4. Cooperation in public goods games: Enhancing effects of group identity and competition By Horstmann, Elaine; Blankenberg, Ann-Kathrin; Schneider, Tim
  5. L'ascesi intramondana e gli spazi di mercato By Giuseppe Conti
  6. The ordonomic approach to business ethics By Pies, Ingo
  7. Piketty meets Pasinetti: On public investment and intelligent machinery By Mattauch, Linus; Klenert, David; Stiglitz, Joseph E.; Edenhofer, Ottmar
  8. Ironie bei Schumpeter: Ein Interpretationsvorschlag zum 75. Jubiläum von "Kapitalismus, Sozialismus und Demokratie" By Pies, Ingo
  9. A Very Brief Approximation to What Is the Capability Approach of Amartya Sen? By León Tamayo, Dorian Fernando; Moreno, Jose Luis
  10. Too Lucky to be True - Fairness Views under the Shadow of Cheating By Stefania Bortolotti; Ivan Soraperra; Matthias Sutter; Claudia Zoller
  11. Ein ordonomischer Beitrag zum Narrativ der Moderne: Wissenschaft und Wirtschaft stellen Konkurrenz in den Dienst gesellschaftlicher Kooperation By Pies, Ingo

  1. By: Miguel D. Ramirez (Department of Economics, Trinity College)
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the very important notion of capital from a Marxian perspective as opposed to a neoclassical one. It is argued that when capital is viewed as a historically determined social process (relation), rather than as a thing or a collection of things, it tends to assume certain specific forms more often than others depending on the particular stage of economic history. Capital thus refers simultaneously to social relations and to things. Given this frame of reference, notions such as money and property capital are more easily accommodated and consequently are not written off as financial or fictitious capital—not real capital—because they “produce nothing.” The paper also focuses on Marx’s important analysis of the time of production and the turnover of capital in terms of the production of surplus-value (profit). It then examines Marx’s equally important and prescient analysis of how the turnover speed of capital is affected by the time of circulation of commodities (the realization of surplus-value) and the growing use of credit (in its various forms) in the capitalist system. Finally, the paper turns its attention to the economic role of time as it relates to interest-bearing (loan) capital and Adam Smith’s important distinction between productive and unproductive labor—one whose clear comprehension rests on viewing capital as a social construct.
    Keywords: Capital; commodity capital; credit; crises; exchange-value; interest-bearing capital; money capital; productive capital; productive and unproductive labor; time of production and circulation; turnover speed of capital; rate of surplus-value (profit).
    JEL: B10 B14 B24
    Date: 2017–10
  2. By: Elon Kohlberg; Abraham Neyman
    Abstract: A game of threats on a finite set of players, $N$, is a function $d$ that assigns a real number to any coalition, $S \subseteq N$, such that $d \left( S \right) = - d \left( N \setminus S \right)$. A game of threats is not necessarily a coalitional game as it may fail to satisfy the condition $d \left( \emptyset \right) = 0$. We show that analogs of the classic Shapley axioms for coaltional games determine a unique value for games of threats. This value assigns to each player an average of the threat powers, $d \left( S \right)$, of the coalitions that include the player.
    Date: 2017–09
  3. By: Mamoon, Dawood
    Abstract: General Musharraf ruled the country as a self proclaimed enlightened dictator. His politics is as repressive as has been the case of any dictatorial regime. However the paper suggests that he did make a genuine effort to uphold Pakistani economy that witnessed recessionary trends in 1990s. This paper is a critical analysis of Musharraf’s politics in contrast to his economic policies.
    Keywords: Politics, Macro-Economy, Institutions
    JEL: Z0 Z1 Z18
    Date: 2017–10–16
  4. By: Horstmann, Elaine; Blankenberg, Ann-Kathrin; Schneider, Tim
    Abstract: A lot of economic and social situations can be described as contests in which agents need to distribute scare resources. Individual behavior plays an important role within these situations, while identity strongly impacts on behavior. This paper asks how group identity impacts the provision of a public good in a contest situation with different prize sharing rules. We show that group identity significantly increases contributions. Moreover, it turns out that identity affects how subjects react to different prize sharing rules. Our findings contribute to an increased understanding of the nature of group identity and its impact on economic behavior.
    Keywords: group identity,contest,public goods game,multi-level interaction,experiment
    Date: 2017
  5. By: Giuseppe Conti
    Abstract: The paper investigates some historical and philosophical foundations of the gift. In the neoliberal ideology the gift is like a merchant exchange, and evaluable in a simple scheme of supply and demand interactions. This approach was in line with an ethical change about the social consideration of ancient and Thomistic contempt of the chrematistics, opposed to good life. From this reversal of ancient ethos descends the main aspects of a new way of governance of society that narrows personal rights.
    Keywords: Innerworldly asceticism, Capitalism as religion, Gift and exchange.
    Date: 2017–01–01
  6. By: Pies, Ingo
    Abstract: 'Ordonomics' is a research program that has been developed at the Chair of Economic Ethics at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg. It holds that business actors (persons and organizations) can employ morality as a 'factor of production', and that business ethics can be based on a specific rational-choice analysis that is fully in line with the established tradition of economic thinking. With regard to practice, the main point is that ordonomics offers a guiding concept for creating win-win solutions that help business firms to do well by doing good. With regard to theory, ordonomics offers a conceptual framework for business ethics that makes ethics and economics coherent and mutually compatible with each other.
    Keywords: ordonomics,business ethics,corporate social responsibility,corporate citi-zenship,rational choice,social dilemma,governance
    JEL: A12 D02 D21 D23 D62 L14 L21 M14 P12 Y80
    Date: 2017
  7. By: Mattauch, Linus; Klenert, David; Stiglitz, Joseph E.; Edenhofer, Ottmar
    Abstract: N/A
    JEL: D31 E21 H31 H41 H54
    Date: 2017
  8. By: Pies, Ingo
    Abstract: 1942 hat Joseph A. Schumpeter 'Kapitalismus, Sozialismus und Demokratie' veröffentlicht. Dieses Buch vermag auch nach rund 75 Jahren immer noch zu faszinieren. Allerdings ist es nicht leicht zu verstehen, weil dem heutigen Lesepublikum viele Hintergrundinformationen nicht mehr ohne weiteres verfügbar sind. Insbesondere die ironische Grundstruktur des Buches hat zahlreiche Missverständnisse produziert. Vor diesem Hintergrund entwickelt der vorliegende Beitrag eine umfassende Interpretation, die Schumpeters Aussagen über Karl Marx, über den kapitalistischen Prozess der schöpferischen Zerstörung, über die Möglichkeit einer sozialistischen Ordnung sowie über die unwahrscheinliche Vereinbarkeit von Sozialismus und Demokratie allgemein verständlich rekonstruiert.
    Date: 2017
  9. By: León Tamayo, Dorian Fernando; Moreno, Jose Luis
    Abstract: The capability approach developed by Sen represents a proposal for the evaluation of individual well-being and social development centered on people and away - but not exclusive- of materiality. In the present article describes the capability approach developed by Sen and examines the importance for the evaluation of human development.
    Keywords: capability approach,Sen's capability approach,functioning,Amartya Sen
    JEL: I31 I32 D63
    Date: 2017
  10. By: Stefania Bortolotti; Ivan Soraperra; Matthias Sutter; Claudia Zoller
    Abstract: The steady increase in inequality over the past decades has revived a lively debate about what can be considered a fair distribution of income. Public support for the extent of redistribution typically depends on the perceived causes of income inequality, such as differences in effort, luck, or opportunities. We study how fairness views and the extent of redistribution are affected by a hitherto overlooked, but relevant factor: immoral self-serving behavior that can lead to increased inequality. We focus on situations in which the rich have potentially acquired their fortunes by means of cheating. In an experiment, we let third parties redistribute resources between two stakeholders who could earn money either by choosing a safe amount or by engaging in a risky, but potentially more profitable, investment. In one treatment, the outcome of the risky investment is determined by a random move, while in another treatment stakeholders can cheat to obtain the more profitable outcome. Although third parties cannot verify cheating, we find that the mere suspicion of cheating changes fairness views of third parties considerably and leads to a strong polarization. When cheating opportunities are present, the share of subjects redistributing money from rich to poor stakeholders triples and becomes as large as the fraction of libertarians - i.e., participants who never redistribute. Without cheating opportunities, libertarian fairness views dominate, while egalitarian views are much less prevalent. These results indicate that fairness views and attitudes towards redistribution change significantly when people believe that income inequality is the result of cheating by the rich.
    Keywords: fairness views, redistribution, unethical behavior, inequality, experiment
    JEL: C91 D63 D81 H26
    Date: 2017
  11. By: Pies, Ingo
    Abstract: Dieser Aufsatz skizziert in sieben Leitsätzen den ordonomischen Beitrag zum Narrativ der Moderne. Die Grundidee wird entwickelt in der Auseinandersetzung mit Steven Pinker. Als wichtigstes Faktum der letzten 10.000 Jahre wird nicht die säkulare Abnahme der Gewalt bestimmt, sondern die in den letzten 200 Jahren forciert einsetzende Anhebung des globalen Lebensstandards: Die moderne Gesellschaft entfaltet sich als Wachstumsgesellschaft. Ferner wird gezeigt, dass und warum es grundlegend verfehlt ist, den Kapitalismus als System zur Ausbeutung der Arbeiter oder als System zur Ausbeutung der Natur moralisch zu (dis-)qualifizieren: Die globale Marktwirtschaft eröffnet die Option, die Nächstenliebe zur Fernstenliebe zu erweitern, weil sie Solidarität unter Fremden ermöglicht. Entwickelt wird diese Argumentation durch den Nachweis, dass Wissenschaft und Wirtschaft die strukturelle Gemeinsamkeit aufweisen, Konkurrenz in den Dienst gesellschaftlicher Kooperation treten zu lassen.
    Date: 2017

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