nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2020‒01‒06
ten papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Manitoba

  1. Economics and Law Through the Persepctive of Catholic Teachings By Henry Amoroso; Nathaniel Dvorozniak
  2. Incorporating Conditional Morality into Economic Decisions By David Masclet; David L. Dickinson
  3. Ideology and pluralism: A German view By Heise, Arne
  4. درنگی سنجشگرایانه درباره‌ی نئولیبرالیسم By Vahabi, Mehrdad; Mohajer, Nasser
  5. Measuring and Using Happiness to Support Public Policies By John F. Helliwell
  6. L'anthropologie économique de Pierre Bourdieu : vision économique et vision sociologique du social. By Nathanael Colin-Jaeger
  7. Economie du bonheur By Michel Renault
  8. Markets, queues, and taxes By Erwin Ooghe
  9. Georges Bataille, François Perroux and French Critiques of the Marshall Plan By Fèvre, Raphaël
  10. How Central Bankers Learned to Love Financialization: The Fed, the Bank, and the Enlisting of Unfettered Markets in the Conduct of Monetary Policy By Walter, Timo; Wansleben, Leon

  1. By: Henry Amoroso (Seton Hall University); Nathaniel Dvorozniak (Seton Hall University)
    Abstract: Through Catholic social thought, examining justice as a means of an individual?s dignity, freedom, and the act of charity, it is to be considered that the infrastructure of law and economics is to be subject to reformation in purpose to pursue a more just societal order. The practice of these professions, specifically in jurisprudence terms, being the consideration of not what is but an examination of what should be, is considerably interrelated with the pedagogical functions of the catholic church and its history in teachings and functions as a global institution(s). The major principles subscribed to the notions of law and social theory serving as guidance to lawyers, judges, and policy makers is not an amoral practice which renders results regardless of social implications but in fact is a profession which examines the welfare of the state, the fundamental ideas of evil, right, and wrong. These notions transcend into the principled ideas and structures of both government and economic models, more broadly supporting an institution of free market activity which reaffirms man?s personal dignity to engage in a system which inspires responsibility, a wage in coordination with the meaning of justice, private ownership, and more which structures peace, concord and justice. This perspective of catholic thought requires a departure from conventional thinking and a greater adherence to catholic social teaching which regards safeguarding human rights as well as the dignity of an individual as the centerpiece and purpose of law and economics. Law and economics, through the prism of Catholicism, is an erection of societal order designed to advance the welfare of the common good. ?Economics and Law Through the Perspective of Catholic Teachings? intends to reposition the individual?s normative perspectives on the ideas of legality and economic arrangements and instead questions models of these practices in a manner which examines the freedom of man and women. By doing so and by introducing perspectives of law and economics in the catholic thought is to question the contemporary secular sectors of these professions. Residing on the proposition that society can benefit from the extension of social catholic teachings, this paper proposes that career professionals in the fields of law and economics be prescribed to a construction of influenced religious teaching that more effectively utilizes his or her position as a means to extend a greater sense of justice for all bound in the fabric of both America and the world.
    Keywords: Catholic Social Teaching Economic
    JEL: A10
    Date: 2019–10
  2. By: David Masclet (Univ Rennes, CNRS, CREM - UMR 6211, F-35000 Rennes, France); David L. Dickinson (Appalachian State University, Department of Economics, USA)
    Abstract: We present a framework that incorporates both moral motivations and fairness considerations into utility. The main idea is that individuals face a preference trade-off between their material individual interest and their desire to follow moral norms. In our model, we assume that moral motivation is conditional and may be influenced by others’ actions. Specifically, in our framework moral obligation is a combination of two main components: an autonomous component and a social influence component that captures the influence of others. Our framework is able to explain many stylized results in the literature and to improve theories of economic behavior.
    Keywords: Fairness; Ethical Decision Making; Moral Motivation; Behavioral Economics
    JEL: B3 D6 D9
    Date: 2019–12
  3. By: Heise, Arne
    Abstract: As a social science, economics studies social interactions. What distinguishes it from other social science disciplines is, firstly, its focus on interactions involving the management of scarce resources and, secondly, its conception of itself as generating traceable, verifiable findings that are free of normative judgements but instead yield 'objective knowledge'. Some regard this methodological foundation of positivist fallibilism as the feature that makes economics the 'queen of the social sciences'. Others are critical of these core assumptions, which they believe have no place in a social science. Interestingly, both critiques and defences of economics often make reference to ideology: defenders claim that economics is as free of ideological bias as it is possible to be, while critics deny economics' status as a science and instead regard it as an 'ideology that serves to uphold power relations'. This article explores the relationship between ideology and economics with special reference to German academia, and asks whether a pluralist approach to economics could help to make the discipline less vulnerable to the charge of being ideological.
    Keywords: ideology,pluralism,monism,value freedom,methodology,ontology
    JEL: A12 A13 B40 B50
    Date: 2019
  4. By: Vahabi, Mehrdad; Mohajer, Nasser
    Abstract: This paper discusses different meanings and ambiguities of “neoliberalism” as a concept. Three dimensions of this concept as an economic doctrine, principles of economic policies (Washington Consensus) and a particular type of accumulation regime (post-Fordism) are explored. It also explores the evolution of this concept among its left and right advocates since the financial Crisis in 2008 notably the “authoritarian liberalism” and the “crisis of liberalism”. Finally, it reviews this concept is used in explaining certain aspects of the political economy of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
    Keywords: Neoliberalism, Authoritarian liberalism, Classical Liberalism, Social Liberalism, Washington Consensus, Keynes, Hayek, Mises, Friedman, Accumulation regime
    JEL: B2 E5 E58 G2 H7 N4
    Date: 2019–12–26
  5. By: John F. Helliwell
    Abstract: This paper summarizes the philosophical and empirical grounds for giving a primary role to the evaluations that people make of the quality of their lives. These evaluations permit comparisons among communities, regions, nations and population subgroups, enable the estimation of the relative importance of various sources of happiness, and provide a well-being lens to aid the choice of public policies to support well-being. Available results expose the primacy of social determinants of happiness, and especially the power of generosity and other positive social connections to improve the levels, distribution and sustainability of well-being.
    JEL: D6 I31 Z18
    Date: 2019–12
  6. By: Nathanael Colin-Jaeger (TRIANGLE - Triangle : action, discours, pensée politique et économique - ENS Lyon - École normale supérieure - Lyon - UL2 - Université Lumière - Lyon 2 - UJM - Université Jean Monnet [Saint-Étienne] - IEP Lyon - Sciences Po Lyon - Institut d'études politiques de Lyon - Université de Lyon - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: Ce travail vise à développer la critique bourdieusienne de l'anthropologie économique tout en clarifiant l'ontologie sociale qu'on peut tirer des conceptions bourdieusiennes.
    Keywords: Institutions,Sociology,Bourdieu,Society,Rational Choice
    Date: 2018–03–09
  7. By: Michel Renault (CREM - Centre de recherche en économie et management - UNICAEN - Université de Caen Normandie - NU - Normandie Université - UR1 - Université de Rennes 1 - UNIV-RENNES - Université de Rennes - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: «C'est que du bonheur », s'exclame-t-on désormais communément à tout propos ! Mais qu'est-ce que le bonheur ? Un désir, une aspiration ? Une disposition d'esprit, une aptitude que chacun posséderait à des degrés différents, l'humanité se divisant entre optimistes et pessimistes ? Notre époque, pourtant lourde d'angoisses, semble en effet obsédée par le bonheur. Elle paraît faire de la capacité à être heureux une injonction, un ordre politiquement correct : multiplication de guides et de manuels, créations de clubs et de think tank, etc. Ce dictionnaire est donc né d'un étonnement sur la place paradoxale prise par une notion fuyante dès que l'on tente de la fixer historiquement et psychologiquement. Il se veut donc critique. Croisant des points de vue multiples à travers 230 entrées et 92 auteurs, de la philosophie à la littérature, des arts à la sociologie, de l'économie à la psychologie et à la psychanalyse, des neurosciences à l'histoire, etc., il est à la fois instrument de connaissances et invitation à réfléchir sur le contemporain. L'enjeu de ce dictionnaire réside surtout dans la volonté de questionner les nouveaux lichés sur le bonheur.
    Date: 2019–11–14
  8. By: Erwin Ooghe
    Abstract: In his thought-provoking book 'What Money Can't Buy. The Moral Limits of Markets', Sandel (2012) claims that some nonmarket ways of allocating goods, such as the ethics of the queue (first come, first served), are gradually being displaced by the ethics of the market. He highlights inequality as one of two reasons why we should care about this tendency: “In a society where everything is for sale, life is harder for those of modest means” (Sandel, 2012, p. 8). I investigate whether queuing can improve redistribution in a second-best setting where also commodity and earnings taxes are available. I specify first a set of bench-mark assumptions - reminiscent of the Atkinson-Stiglitz model - and show that it is never optimal to introduce queuing. It suggests, contrary to Sandel, that introducing more market and less queuing improves the life of `those of modest means’. Afterwards, I also relax some of the bench-mark assumptions. Two cases pro queuing seem promising: differentiated queuing and paternalism.
    Keywords: market allocation, queuing, earnings taxes, commodity taxes
    Date: 2019
  9. By: Fèvre, Raphaël
    Abstract: This paper assesses French intellectuals’ early reception of the Marshall Plan in the light of the discussion Georges Bataille (1897-1962) and François Perroux (1903-1987) had in the journal Critique, by the second-half of 1948. I argue that Bataille and Perroux parallel efforts to go beyond what they perceive as the narrow boundaries of economics is mainly responsible for their unexpectedly optimistic reception of the American aid. The paper shows that the Perroux-Bataille discussion involved additional participants (as Jean Piel, and through him foreign economists like Colin Clark and Alvin Hansen). Those will help us grasping in more depth Bataille’s original account of the Marshall Plan, as well as assessing his disagreement with Perroux.
    Date: 2019–07–06
  10. By: Walter, Timo; Wansleben, Leon (London School of Economics and Political Science)
    Abstract: Central banks’ role in financialization has received increasing attention in recent years. These debates have predominantly revolved around authorities’ “benign neglect” of asset bubbles, their de-regulatory policies, and the safety-nets they provide for speculative exuberance. Most analyses refer to the dominance of pro-market interests and ideas to explain these actions. The present article moves beyond these accounts by showing how an alignment between techniques of monetary governance and ‘unfettered’ financial markets can explain central banks’ endorsement of increasingly fragile structures of liquidity and their strategic ignorance towards growing amounts of debt. We analyze the processes of abstraction and formalization by which the “programmes” and “technologies” of monetary governance have been made compatible with the texture of contemporary finance; and we show how central banks’ attempts to make markets more amenable to their methods of policy implementation shaped new conduits for financial growth. As empirical cases, we discuss the Federal Reserve’s experiments with different policy frameworks in the 1980s and the Bank of England’s twisted path to inflation targeting from 1979 to 1997. These cases allow us to demonstrate that the infrastructural power of contemporary central banking is predicated on the same institutional foundations that have made financialization possible.
    Date: 2018–11–07

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