nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2018‒10‒08
ten papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Manitoba

  1. Postkeynesianismus: Ein heterodoxer Ansatz auf der Suche nach einer Fundierung By Heise, Arne
  2. Economics and Economic Methodology in a Core-Periphery Economic World By John B. Davis
  3. On zero-sum game formulation of non zero-sum game By Satoh, Atsuhiro; Tanaka, Yasuhito
  4. "Evolving Central Bank thinking: the Irish Central Bank, 1943-69" By Ella Kavanagh
  5. Experimental Research on Contests By Roman Sheremeta
  6. Il rapporto tra capitale pubblico e altre variabili macroeconomiche: analisi della letteratura By Federici, Andrea
  7. I Don't Know By Matthew Backus; Andrew Little
  8. Money is where the fun ends: material interests and individuals preference for direct democracy By Philipp Harms; Claudi Landwehr
  9. Trade and Terroir. The Political Economy of the World’s First Geographical Indications By Giulia Meloni; Johan Swinnen
  10. Writing the qualitative: reflexive writing, writing the plural, writing as performance By Jean-Luc Moriceau

  1. By: Heise, Arne
    Abstract: In diesem Beitrag geht es darum, den Postkeynesianismus als paradigmatische Alternative zum herrschenden neoklassischen Mainstream etwas näher kennenzulernen. Es zeigt sich sehr schnell, dass der Postkeynesianismus keine einheitliche Denkschule darstellt, sondern vielmehr eine Vielzahl von theoretischen Ansätzen darunter zu verstehen ist, die eine Reihe von methodologischen und epistemologischen Gemeinsamkeiten aufweist und die einige identitätsstiftende Postulate verbindet. Zum konkreten Nachvollzug dieser Postulate aus dem axiomatischen Kern des Postkeynesianismus wird dann darauf verzichtet, dass Kaleidoskop postkeynesinaischer Theorie mit kaleckianischer, kaldorianischer oder gar sraffianischer Grundlage aufzuzeigen, sondern es wird vielmehr nur ein Postkeynesianismus - die monetäre Theorie der Produktion - in seiner paradigmatischen und formalen Struktur beleuchtet und die darauf aufbauende Theorie der Marktteilnahme als alternative Theorie der Wirtschaftspolitik dargelegt.
    Keywords: Postkeynesianismus,heterodoxe Ökonomik,Neoklassik,Paradigma
    JEL: B41 B50 B59 E11 E12 E60
    Date: 2018
  2. By: John B. Davis (Department of Economics Marquette University)
    Abstract: This paper uses a core-periphery distinction to characterize contemporary economics, economic methodology, and also today's world economy. First, it applies the distinction to the organization of contemporary economics through an examination of the problem of explaining economics' relations to and boundaries with other disciplines. Second, it argues that economics' core-periphery organization is replicated in a similar organization of the use and practice of contemporary economic methodology in economics. Third, it draws on the use of the core-periphery thinking in economics itself and the uneven development of the world economy to provide possible foundations for economics and economic methodology being organized in core-periphery terms. Fourth, the paper briefly discusses three as a potential countervailing forces operating on the development of contemporary economics that might work against its core-periphery organization.
    Keywords: core-periphery, economics and other disciplines, economic methodology, underdevelopment
    JEL: A12 B41 B50 O20
    Date: 2018–09
  3. By: Satoh, Atsuhiro; Tanaka, Yasuhito
    Abstract: We consider a formulation of a non zero-sum n players game by an n+1 players zero-sum game. We suppose the existence of the n+1-th player in addition to n players in the main game, and virtual subsidies to the n players which is provided by the n+1-th player. Its strategic variable affects only the subsidies, and does not affect choice of strategies by the n players in the main game. His objective function is the opposite of the sum of the payoffs of the n players. We will show 1) The minimax theorem by Sion (Sion(1958)) implies the existence of Nash equilibrium in the n players non zero-sum game. 2) The maximin strategy of each player in {1, 2, ..., n} with the minimax strategy of the n+1-th player is equivalent to the Nash equilibrium strategy of the n players non zero-sum game. 3) The existence of Nash equilibrium in the n players non zero-sum game implies Sion's minimax theorem for pairs of each of the n players and the n+1-th player.
    Keywords: zero-sum game, non zero-sum game, minimax theorem, virtual subsidy
    JEL: C72
    Date: 2018–09–13
  4. By: Ella Kavanagh (University College Cork)
    Abstract: "The lens through which a Central Bank views the economy and macroeconomic policy affects their analysis of economic performance, their assessment of government policies, their role as policymakers and ultimately economic growth and performance. Economic ideas matter. In keeping with this idea, this paper examines how the thinking of the Irish Central Bank, evolved over a period of major transformation (1943-1969) in the Irish economy and intellectual developments in monetary theory and policy. In doing so, the paper seeks to address the gaps identified by Brownlow (2010) in our understanding of “the precise intellectual influences on the development of the Bank’s economic thinking” and to evaluate whether or not “Ireland’s monetary authorities merely copied British policy practice rather than considered the implications for Ireland of the emerging academic research within monetary economics” (Brownlow 2010, p. 320) This paper adopts an interpretivist approach to the Bank’s Annual Reports from their introduction in 1943 until 1969 to uncover the Bank’s evolving thinking. In this regard, it extends the narrative work completed by Moynihan (1975). We adopt the view that the annual reports, in terms of the data that the Bank collected and published, the evidence it used, its analysis and its commentary on the Irish economy and international events reveal evolving thinking and understanding of how monetary factors affect the economy, how government policy interacts with monetary matters and the role of the Bank and monetary policy in a small but open economy. Where relevant, we also support our analysis with archival research. Our preliminary analysis points to an evolution in the level of analysis, critique and the application of economic ideas. Although the Bank’s governors were initially influenced by UK Treasury thinking, they were also guided by international economists. We note that over time the Central Bank became progressively shaped and influenced by international academic developments in monetary theory and policy, which repositioned them away from UK monetary thinking. While the Central Bank Act 1942 required the Bank to “publish informative material” regarding monetary and credit problems, we find that the content of the reports evolved very rapidly. The Governor (and subsequent governors) began to publish an annual report immediately and by the second report, the Bank had started to comment on macroeconomic conditions. By 1947 the Bank’s Report began to comment on government policy. In this regard they provide clear evidence that the Irish Central Bank differed significantly in how it perceived itself and its role, from the Bank of England at this time. The latter’s reports did not include either analysis or commentary as it wished to ensure that its interpretation of events and their exposition of current problems, would not cause embarrassment to the government. "
    Keywords: Central Banks; Development; Monetary History; Economic Thought; Policy
    JEL: N00
    Date: 2018–04
  5. By: Roman Sheremeta (Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University and Economic Science Institute, Chapman University)
    Abstract: Costly competitions between economic agents are modeled as contests. Researchers use laboratory experiments to study contests and test comparative static predictions of contest theory. Commonly, researchers find that participants’ efforts are significantly higher than predicted by the standard Nash equilibrium. Despite overbidding, most comparative static predictions, such as the incentive effect, the size effect, the discouragement effect and others are supported in the laboratory. In addition, experimental studies examine various contest structures, including dynamic contests (such as multi-stage races, wars of attrition, tug-of-wars), multi-dimensional contests (such as Colonel Blotto games), and contests between groups. This article provides a short review of such studies.
    Keywords: Contest; All-pay auction; Tournament; Dynamic Contest; Multi-battle Contest; Multidimensional Contest; Group Contest; Rent-seeking; Experiment; Overbidding; Over-dissipation; Incentive Effect; Size Effect; Discouragement Effect; Strategic Momentum
    JEL: C7 C9 D4 D7 D9 H4 J4 K4 L2 M5
    Date: 2018
  6. By: Federici, Andrea
    Abstract: This work critically analyses all the contributions in public investment theory. Particularly I discuss the relationship between the stock of public capital and some macroeconomic variable such as output, employment and the stock of private capital. In other words, how the cited variables have an influence on each other? And if the answer is positive, how much is it? To do this it will be necessary to survey critically the literature developed around this topic beginning from the paper of Aschauer D.A. (1988), which represents the starting point of the debate. In fact, this matter of study explodes after his works. For this reason, we try to explain the main approaches in the literature about this field of research. Then we try to analyse the general question and the most important problems about the definition of public capital and the link with some macroeconomic variables and the private factors of production. Finally, we discuss the most problematic aspects from an econometric point of view. We also synthetize the most popular studies on this topic. We discovered most of these studies found a positive relationship of public capital respect to output, employment and the stock of private capital. There is now more consensus than in the past that public capital has a positive influence on the economic system of a country. However, the impact reported by recent studies is not as big as some earlier papers suggested.
    Keywords: Capitale pubblico, Investimento pubblico, Crescita economica, Occupazione, Capitale privato
    JEL: H54
    Date: 2018–06–15
  7. By: Matthew Backus; Andrew Little
    Abstract: Experts with reputational concerns, even good ones, are averse to admitting what they don’t know. This diminishes our trust in experts and, in turn, the role of science in society. We model the strategic communication of uncertainty, allowing for the salient reality that some questions are ill-posed or unanswerable. Combined with a new use of Markov sequential equilibrium, our model sheds new light on old results about the challenge of getting experts to admit uncertainty – even when it is possible to check predictive success. Moreover, we identify a novel solution: checking features of the problem itself that only good experts will infer – in particular, whether the problem is answerable – allows for equilibria where uninformed experts do say “I Don’t Know.”
    JEL: D8 D83 L22
    Date: 2018–09
  8. By: Philipp Harms (Johannes Gutenberg-University); Claudi Landwehr (Johannes Gutenberg-University)
    Abstract: Are people’s attitudes towards referenda as a decision-making procedure driven by their material self-interest, or do individuals predominantly value direct democracy as such, regardless of the material payoffs associated with anticipated policy outcomes? To answer this question, we use a survey data set that offers information on respondents’ support for referenda as a procedure to decide on tax policy, their general views on direct democracy and redistribution, their income levels, socio-economic characteristics, and, most importantly, their expectation about the majority’s support for higher taxes. Allowing for alternative motives to welcome or oppose direct democracy, we find that income per se does not influence individuals’ procedural preferences. However, if respondents expect a clear population majority in favor of or against more redistribution their attitude towards referenda as a procedure to decide on taxation is clearly aligned with their income position.
    Keywords: constitutional choice, direct democracy, redistribution
    Date: 2018–09–27
  9. By: Giulia Meloni; Johan Swinnen
    Abstract: The world’s first geographical indications (GIs) were in the wine sector and focused on the delineation of the location of production, the ‘terroir’: the Burgundy wines in the fifteenth century, the Port wines and Chianti wines in the eighteenth century, and the Champagne wines in the early twentieth century. We analyze the causes for the introduction of these GIs (‘terroirs’) and for changes in their delineation (expansion) later on. Our analysis shows that trade played a very important role in the creation of the ‘terroirs’ but not always through the same mechanisms. For the Port and Chianti GIs it was exports to Britain that were crucial; for Burgundy it was domestic trade to Paris; and for the Champagne GI it was not exports but pressure from wine imports and new wine regions that played a crucial role. For the expansions of the GIs later in history, other factors seem to have been equally important. Expansions of the GIs in the years and centuries after their introduction followed major changes in political power; the spread of a new philosophy in liberal and free markets across Europe; and infrastructure investments which opened up markets and made exports cheaper from “new” producers.
    Date: 2018
  10. By: Jean-Luc Moriceau (DEFI - Département Droit, Economie et Finances - TEM - Télécom Ecole de Management - Institut Mines-Télécom [Paris] - IMT-BS - Institut Mines-Télécom Business School, LITEM - Laboratoire en Innovation, Technologies, Economie et Management - UEVE - Université d'Évry-Val-d'Essonne - IMT-BS - Institut Mines-Télécom Business School)
    Abstract: Writing lies at the heart of qualitative research, even though sometimes constrained by academic journals formats. It is a work of reflexivity and theoretical deepening. Qualitative writings have multiplied, moving away from representation, to discover new fields and to think their political effects. They make us each time fashion a voice. Less authoritarian, feminine, postcolonial, dialogical voices are for example being crafted. They are also performances, putting the thought and the position of the reader in motion, or have him or her taking care of the vulnerable and the sensitive. This article is a call to not lose such a know-how and instead to develop new writings.
    Abstract: La recherche se forme et s'exprime dans la texture et l'épaisseur de la langue. Écrire et décrire le qualitatif demandent d'inventer une écriture propre, un travail de création tout comme l'artisan façonne son art ou l'acteur travaille sa présence et sa voix. L'écriture n'y est pas véhicule mais création de sens. Écrire est un travail de réflexivité et de création, le choix d'une expression, d'une voix, d'une position, d'une présence, d'un engagement. Dans bien des cas l'écriture qualitative est moins reflet que performance.
    Keywords: Reflexive writing,Plural writing,Writing as performance,Ecriture qualitative,Ecriture réflexive,Ecriture performative,Voix de l'auteur
    Date: 2018–04

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