nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2018‒04‒02
eleven papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Manitoba

  1. Keynes on the Sequencing of Economic Policy: Recovery and Reform in 1933 By Sebastian Edwards
  2. Sraffa and Manara: the mystery of the last article of Piero Sraffa By Yoann Verger
  3. First steps for a Sraffian ecological economics. An answer to Martins' “The Classical Circular Economy, Sraffian Ecological Economics and the Capabilities Approach” By Yoann Verger
  4. Removing the Stigma of Divorce: Happiness before and after Remarriage By Sucheon Lee
  5. The focus of academic economics: before and after the crisis By Ernest Aigner; Florentin Glötzl; Matthias Aistleitner; Jakob Kapeller
  6. Rationality in Economics: Theory and Evidence By Sanjit Dhami; Ali al-Nowaihi
  7. Le débat de politique monétaire revisité By Jean-Luc Gaffard
  8. Unfairness at Work: Well-Being and Quits By D'Ambrosio, Conchita; Clark, Andrew E.; Barazzetta, Marta
  9. La herencia en Émile Durkheim By Quintín Quílez Pedro
  10. The Origins of the Division of Labor in Pre-modern Times By Depetris-Chauvin, Emilio; Özak, Ömer
  11. Proximités et Solidarités : de l'État-Providence aux Communs Sociaux By Jacques Garnier; Jean-Benoît Zimmermann

  1. By: Sebastian Edwards
    Abstract: On December 31 1933, The New York Times published an open letter from John Maynard Keynes to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. In it Keynes encouraged FDR to expand public works through government borrowing. He also criticized FDR’s exchange rate policy, and argued that there was a need for lower long-term interest rates. But perhaps the most interesting feature of this letter is that Keynes made comments on the sequencing and speed of economic policies. He argued that “recovery” policies should precede “reform” measures. In this paper I analyze this particular aspect of the open letter, and I argue that for Keynes exchange rate stability was a key component of what he considered to be the appropriate order of policy. I also provide a comparison between Keynes’s views on sequencing and those developed in the 1980s and 1990s.
    JEL: B21 B22 B26 E31 F31 N12 N22
    Date: 2018–03
  2. By: Yoann Verger (REEDS - Centre international de Recherches en Economie écologique, Eco-innovation et ingénierie du Développement Soutenable - UVSQ - Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines)
    Abstract: Piero Sraffa is a most famous economist, as well as a very parsimonious writer. So the discovery of an unpublished draft article in his unpublished papers is surely a big news for the history of economic thought, even more considering its subject: to provide an answer for the devastating article of C. F. Manara [1968]. Here I provide a first conjecture on why this draft has never been published - Sraffa was not able to overcome Manara's argument - and I show how Dupertuis and Sinha [2009] provide a solution that would have allowed Sraffa to publish what would have been his last article.
    Date: 2018–02–14
  3. By: Yoann Verger (REEDS - Centre international de Recherches en Economie écologique, Eco-innovation et ingénierie du Développement Soutenable - UVSQ - Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines)
    Abstract: Here I provide some further elaboration on the idea of Sraffian ecological economics and its articulation with the capability approach. This enables addressing some important questions raised by Nuno Ornelas Martins (2018) when commenting on the idea of Sraffian ecological economics as outlined in Verger (2017) while advancing the basis for a capability approach. In a more general way, a research pathway for the development of Sraffian ecological economics is presented, going from an historical work on the epistemological, ethical, and ontological positions of Sraffa, to the investigation of specific areas of research. Finally, to understand the connection between Sraffa's economic theory and the capability approach discussed by Martins (2018), while addressing the environmental impacts of production, an essential aspect is Pasinetti's concept of hyper-subsystem (Pasinetti, 1988), as suggested by Vivian Walsh (2003).
    Date: 2018–02–12
  4. By: Sucheon Lee
    Abstract: Many studies confirm that marriage does not have lasting effects on levels of happiness, whereas divorce induces serious, scarring effects through social stigma. However, few academic efforts have been made regarding how remarriage after divorce impacts the subjective well-being (SWB) of the divorced. Taking into consideration that remarriage often entails regaining social acceptance, this paper examines the possibly different patterns of happiness depending on marital order. Specifically, this longitudinal study uses the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) data set in order to compare SWB trajectories around first and subsequent marriages. The results show that the remarried go through a significantly greater boost in happiness than the first-married during the transition phase. Moreover, while life satisfaction that increased in the years around the first marriage quickly returns to the initial baseline, remarriage generates a lasting increase. This paper provides a complementary perspective to existing researches on divorce and debates over the hedonic treadmill theory.
    Keywords: Remarriage, Subjective well-being, Life course, Social stigma
    Date: 2018
  5. By: Ernest Aigner (Vienna University of Economics and Business, Austria); Florentin Glötzl (Vienna University of Economics and Business, Austria); Matthias Aistleitner (Institute for Comprehensive Analysis of the Economy, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria); Jakob Kapeller (Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria)
    Abstract: Has the global financial crisis of 2007ff had a visible impact on the economics profession? To answer this question we employ a bibliometric approach and compare the content and orientation of economic literature before and after the crisis with reference to two different samples: A large-scale sample consisting of more than 440,000 articles published between 1956 and 2016 and a smaller sample of 400 top-cited papers before and after the crisis. Our results suggest that – unlike the Great Depression of the 1930s – the current financial crisis did not lead to any major theoretical or methodological changes in contemporary economics, although the topic of financial instability received increased attention after the crisis.
    Keywords: crisis, economics profession, economic journals, keyword analysis, paradigmatic development
    Date: 2018–02
  6. By: Sanjit Dhami; Ali al-Nowaihi
    Abstract: We examine the various senses in which economist use the term “rationality” and then outline some of the commonly drawn implications and auxiliary assumptions. Finally, we confront the implications with the empirical evidence, drawing on the insights from the exciting new field of behavioral economics.
    Keywords: rationality, self-regarding preferences, efficient markets, heuristics, optimization
    JEL: B40
    Date: 2018
  7. By: Jean-Luc Gaffard (OFCE Sciences-Po; Université Côte d'Azur; GREDEG CNRS; Institut Universitaire de France)
    Abstract: L’article est dédié à reconsidérer analyse et politique monétaires afin de mieux comprendre pourquoi une reprise économique durable après la crise est si difficile. Suivant le consensus en vigueur, l’économie de marché est intrinsèquement stable, étant seulement perturbée par les mauvais comportements du gouvernement et des banques. Nous maintenons, au contraire, que cette économie est instable et que la stabiliser requiert une structure financière spécifique. Une telle position repose sur une approche analytique suivant laquelle l’organisation monétaire et financière des échanges est un outil qui facilite le fonctionnement des marchés Suivant cette perspective centrée sur l'hétérogénéité des marchés et des agents, et donc sur le rôle des institutions dans la détermination de la performance globale, il apparaît que les rigidités nominales et l'engagement financier sont les moyens qui rendent la reprise économique solide. La raison est que ces mesures empêchent les déséquilibres successifs et inévitables d’être explosifs. Dès lors, un modèle économique pertinent doit prendre en considération la dimension temporelle du processus économique et permettre de comparer différents scénarios correspondant à différents schémas institutionnels.
    Keywords: inflation, marché, monnaie, stabilité
    Date: 2018–03
  8. By: D'Ambrosio, Conchita (University of Luxembourg); Clark, Andrew E. (Paris School of Economics); Barazzetta, Marta (University of Luxembourg)
    Abstract: We here consider the effect of the level of income that individuals consider to be fair for the job they do, which we take as measure of comparison income, on both subjective well-being and objective future job quitting. In six waves of German Socio-Economic Panel data, the extent to which own labour income is perceived to be unfair is significantly negatively correlated with subjective well-being, both in terms of cognitive evaluations (life and job satisfaction) and affect (the frequency of feeling happy, sad and angry). Perceived unfairness also translates into objective labour-market behaviour, with current unfair income predicting future job quits.
    Keywords: fair income, subjective well-being, quits, SOEP
    JEL: D63 J28 J31
    Date: 2018–02
  9. By: Quintín Quílez Pedro
    Abstract: El tema de la herencia constituye un asunto menor dentro de la sociología desarrollada por Émile Durkheim (1858-1917). Sin embargo, su apuesta por la eliminación legal de la herencia familiar fue, para este autor, no solo la oportunidad de ofrecer una interpretación sociológica de su origen, función y evolución, sino sobre todo de situarse políticamente en los debates políticos del momento. Como resultado, Durkheim formuló una predicción sobre su futura desaparición. La herencia sería substituida por otras formas de transmisión de bienes más pertinentes para las sociedades modernas caracterizadas por una cada vez mayor división y especialización del trabajo. Si El capital en el siglo XXI (2013), el exitoso libro del economista Thomas Piketty, ha vuelto a poner sobre la mesa el papel jugado por el capital económico heredado en el actual incremento de la desigualdad social, vale la pena recordar lo que al respecto dijo uno de los padres fundadores de la sociología y de quien estamos conmemorando los cien años de su muerte.
    Keywords: Sociología clásica, Sociología económica, Herencia
    Date: 2018–03–01
  10. By: Depetris-Chauvin, Emilio; Özak, Ömer
    Abstract: This research explores the historical roots of the division of labor in pre-modern societies. It advances the hypothesis and establishes empirically that intra-ethnic diversity had a positive effect on the division of labor across ethnicities in the pre-modern era. Exploiting a variety of identification strategies and a novel ethnic level dataset combining geocoded ethnographic, linguistic and genetic data, it establishes that higher levels of intra-ethnic diversity were conducive to economic specialization in the pre-modern era. The findings are robust to a host of geographical, institutional, cultural and historical confounders, and suggest that variation in intra-ethnic diversity is the main predictor of the division of labor in pre-modern times.
    Keywords: Comparative Development; Division of Labor; Economic Specialization; Intra-Ethnic Diversity; Cultural Diversity; Population Diversity; Genetic Diversity; Linguistic Diversity
    JEL: D29 D74 E40 F10 F14 J24 N10 O10 O11 O12 O40 O43 O44 Z10 Z13
    Date: 2018–02–14
  11. By: Jacques Garnier (LEST - Laboratoire d'économie et de sociologie du travail - AMU - Aix Marseille Université - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Jean-Benoît Zimmermann (GREQAM - Groupement de Recherche en Économie Quantitative d'Aix-Marseille - ECM - Ecole Centrale de Marseille - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - AMU - Aix Marseille Université - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales)
    Abstract: Dans cet article, nous nous intéressons à la coévolution des inégalités sociales, des dispositifs de solidarité et du système économique à travers trois grandes phases durant lesquelles les dispositifs de solidarité ont combiné de manière différenciée deux grandes formes de solidarité, par les proximités (par en bas) vs par l’attribution de droits (par en haut). Avec la globalisation de l'économie et la crise des années 2008 et suivantes, les inégalités sociales se sont accentuées et ont revêtu un aspect spatial marqué, jusqu’à une échelle micro-locale. En nous appuyant sur une approche théorique en termes de proximité et en nous référant aux situations largement évoquées aujourd’hui dans la littérature, nous analysons l’incapacité des politiques publiques à répondre efficacement à cette accentuation par la seule prise en compte de la proximité géographique. De nouvelles solidarités « par le bas » tendent en revanche à apporter des réponses hors de la dualité Etat-marché; elles s’apparentent à de nouvelles formes de communs que nous désignons comme « communs sociaux ». Nous montrons en quoi ces communs se distinguent des modalités anciennes de solidarité communautaire. Nous soulignons enfin à quelles conditions ces communs sont susceptibles de constituer des réponses justes et durables à l’accentuation actuelle des inégalités sociales.
    Keywords: France,inégalités,solidarité,proximité,communs territoriaux,communs sociaux
    Date: 2018–02

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