nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2022‒02‒14
twelve papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Manitoba

  1. On the monetary nature of savings: a critical analysis of the Loanable Funds Theory By Giancarlo Bertocco; Andrea Kalajzić
  2. Virtues and institutions in Smith: a reconstruction By Emmanuel S. de Dios
  3. How Law and Economics Was Marketed in a Hostile World: the institutionalization of the field in the United States from the immediate post-war period to the Reagan years By Thierry Kirat; Frédéric Marty
  4. Natürliche experimente im arbeitsmarkt und darüber hinaus: Nobelpreis für David Card, Joshua Angrist und Guido Imbens By Jäger, Simon; Pischke, Jörn Steffen
  5. From the First World War to the National Recovery Administration (1917-1935) - The Case for Regulated Competition in the United States during the Interwar Period By Thierry Kirat; Frédéric Marty
  6. Zur ungleichen Verteilung von Macht innerhalb der Volkswirtschaftslehre in Deutschland: Eine feld-und kapitaltheoretische Betrachtung By Reinke, Rouven
  7. In a World with Many Targets, One-Dimensional Target Indicators Will Always Be Bypassed By Gert G. Wagner
  8. L'évaluation économique en santé au prisme de la typologie des épistémès de Foucault By Clémence Thebaut
  9. Globalization By Kevin Hjortshøj O’Rourke
  10. A lie is a lie: the ethics of lying in business negotiations By Sherwood, Charles
  11. Penser les mots de l'économie pour mieux panser les maux de l'environnement By Antoine Missemer
  12. Updating confidence in beliefs By Brian Hill

  1. By: Giancarlo Bertocco; Andrea Kalajzić
    Abstract: To hypothesize the existence of a relationship between money and savings means questioning a fundamental pillar of the mainstream economic theory: the concept of neutrality of money. According to the traditional theory economic phenomena such as savings can be defined independently from money. The objective of this work is to show that savings cannot be defined independently from money and that savings must be considered as a monetary phenomenon. The paper consists of two parts. Starting from Adam Smith’s analysis and continuing up to the approaches developed by contemporary economists, in the first part we summarize the most significant aspects and the limitations of the mainstream theory. In the second part we specify the reasons of the non-neutrality of money and of the monetary nature of savings.
    Keywords: Savings, money, development, Keynes, Schumpeter
    JEL: B12 B13 B52 E12 E44
    Date: 2022–02
  2. By: Emmanuel S. de Dios (School of Economics, University of the Philippines Diliman)
    Abstract: I provide a formal explanation of the relationship between the virtues of prudence, justice, and benevolence described by Adam Smith in the Theory of moral sentiments and connect these with the themes Smith subsequently discusses in the Wealth of nations. I contend that the other-regarding concerns Smith discusses as internally held virtues in TMS are presumed addressed instead by formal mechanisms in the WN -- particularly the third-party institutions of law and anonymous market exchange.
    Keywords: Adam Smith Problem; virtues; institutions; self-interest; altruism
    JEL: B12 B15
    Date: 2021–10
  3. By: Thierry Kirat (IRISSO - Institut de Recherche Interdisciplinaire en Sciences Sociales - Université Paris Dauphine-PSL - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Frédéric Marty (GREDEG - Groupe de Recherche en Droit, Economie et Gestion - UNS - Université Nice Sophia Antipolis (... - 2019) - COMUE UCA - COMUE Université Côte d'Azur (2015-2019) - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UCA - Université Côte d'Azur)
    Abstract: This article discusses the institutionalization of the field of Law and Economics in the United States from the post-war period to the Reagan administration. It emphasizes the role of pro-market corporate foundations in the development of Law and Economics. It analyses individual and collective trajectories, including research projects, training programs led with judges, as well as leading academics contributions and judicial and administrative careers. It ultimately focuses on the impact of this institutionalization on judging methods
    Keywords: Law and Economics,Foundations,Antitrust,Conservatism
    Date: 2021–01–28
  4. By: Jäger, Simon; Pischke, Jörn Steffen
    Abstract: This year’s Nobel Prize in Economics honoured David Card of the University of California, Berkeley “for his empirical contributions to labour economics”, and Joshua Angrist of MIT and Guido Imbens of Stanford University “for their methodological contributions to the analysis of causal relationships”. We explain how the laureates revolutionised the analysis of causal relationships in empirical economics through the methodology of natural experiments. Three examples from the German labour market on the effects of minimum wages, code-termination and unemployment insurance illustrate how natural experiments yield new insights, which can form the foundation for evidence-based policy advice.
    JEL: R14 J01 N0
    Date: 2021–12–19
  5. By: Thierry Kirat (IRISSO - Institut de Recherche Interdisciplinaire en Sciences Sociales - Université Paris Dauphine-PSL - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Frédéric Marty (GREDEG - Groupe de Recherche en Droit, Economie et Gestion - UNS - Université Nice Sophia Antipolis (... - 2019) - COMUE UCA - COMUE Université Côte d'Azur (2015-2019) - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UCA - Université Côte d'Azur, CIRANO - Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en analyse des organisations - UQAM - Université du Québec à Montréal = University of Québec in Montréal)
    Abstract: The experience of the war economy during the First World War in the United States reinforced the influence of arguments in favour of managed competition. By extending the principles of scientific management to the economy as a whole, this approach aimed to coordinate firms through the exchange of information, which was seen as a necessity both in terms of economic efficiency and response to cyclical fluctuations. Such a stance greatly reduced the application of competition rules. Nevertheless, the proposals that emerged during the 1929 crisis – leading to the reproduction of the war-economy experience in peacetime at the risk of steering the US economy towards the formation of cartels under the supervision of the federal government – were rejected by President Herbert Hoover, despite his defence of a model for regulated competition in the 1920s. The paradox was President Franklin D. Roosevelt's resumption of these projects within the framework of the First New Deal. This paper deals with the arguments that were put forward to evade competition rules and explains why the Democratic administration ultimately decided to return to a resolute enforcement of the Sherman Act.
    Keywords: Information Exchange,Scientific Management,Competition Rules,Cartelization,War Economy
    Date: 2020–12–10
  6. By: Reinke, Rouven
    Abstract: Dieser Beitrag nimmt eine feld-und kapitaltheoretische Analyse der Volkswirtschaftslehre in Deutschland vor. Die Machtstrukturen auf dem Feld der ökonomischen Disziplin werden dabei anhand der(ungleichen) Verteilung des ökonomischen, sozialen und symbolischen Kapitals skizziert. Auf Grundlage einer wissenschaftlichen Indikatorenkonstruktion werden die einzelnen Kapitalsorten operationalisiert. Dabei zeigen sich deutliche Monopolisierungstendenzen zugunsten des Mainstream-Paradigmas sowie eine erhebliche Konzentration von Machtressourcen auf die großen Universitätsstandorte. Verbunden sind diese Ausprägungen mit einem wachsenden Bedeutungsgewinn von Colander's Edge, einer nahezu abgeschlossenen Marginalisierung der Heterodoxie und einem deutlichen Zentrum-Peripherie-Gefälle. Auf dem Feld der Volkswirtschaftslehre ist demzufolge eine sozialstrukturelle Horizontalisierung und Elitisierung der Universitätsstandorte und ein epistemischer Paradigmenmonismus zu beobachten.
    Keywords: Paradigmenmonismus,Kapitaltheorie,Social Studies of Economics,Wissenschaftssoziologie
    JEL: A11 A14 B4 B5 Z1
    Date: 2021
  7. By: Gert G. Wagner
    Abstract: It is striking that economists in particular firmly believe in the benefits of rule-binding, even though this belief runs counter to the standard assumption of economic theory that we humans are self-interested and therefore extremely resourceful when it comes to circumventing inconvenient government regulations, e.g. taxes. In Public Choice Theory, politicians are even assumed to have nothing but self-interest as their guiding motive for action. Why then, in this world of thought, should ultra-self-interested politicians of all people adhere to simple rules such as the debt brake instead of bypass them, if – as is also assumed in this model world – all that matters to them is short-term electoral success, for which government debt can be helpful.
    Keywords: Rule-binding, Champbell, Goodhart’s Law, Hobbes
    JEL: B10 B20 K00 P16
    Date: 2021
  8. By: Clémence Thebaut (NET - Neuroépidémiologie Tropicale - CHU Limoges - Institut d'Epidémiologie Neurologique et de Neurologie Tropicale - INSERM - Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale - GEIST - Institut Génomique, Environnement, Immunité, Santé, Thérapeutique - UNILIM - Université de Limoges, LEDa - Laboratoire d'Economie de Dauphine - IRD - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement - Université Paris Dauphine-PSL - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres, UNILIM - Université de Limoges)
    Abstract: This article is part of a research project which seeks to draw on the methods and tools put forward by Michel Foucault to shed light on all areas of discussion concerning the economic assessment of health. It examines the epistemological basis of preference elicitation methods, based on welfare economics, which are used today to assess the benefits of health care. To do so, this research draws on Foucault's episteme set out in The Order of things. More specifically the article considers that the rejection of interpersonal comparisons that foreshadowed the marginalist revolution and the transition to ordinal measures of utility during the 19th century can be explained by the shift from the classical episteme to a modern episteme. The question of the cardinal or ordinal measurement of utility is central to the economic assessment of health care. Indeed, the methods for valuing health benefits, especially using QALYs, are similar to cardinal measures, in contrast to the paradigm of the welfare economics of which they are meant to be part.
    Abstract: Cet article s'inscrit dans le cadre d'un projet de recherche visant à mobiliser les méthodes et outils proposés par Michel Foucault pour apporter un éclairage sur un ensemble de discussions que soulève l'évaluation économique en santé. Nous nous intéressons ici à l'ancrage épistémologique des méthodes de révélation des préférences individuelles issues de l'économie du bien-être, qui sont aujourd'hui utilisées pour valoriser les bénéfices en santé, en nous appuyant sur la typologie des épistémès de Foucault dans les Mots et les choses. Plus précisément, nous envisageons que le rejet des comparaisons interpersonnelles, que préfigure la révolution marginaliste et la transition vers une mesure ordinale des utilités, s'explique par le passage d'une épistémè classique à une épistémè moderne. La question du caractère cardinal ou ordinal de la mesure de l'utilité reste centrale pour l'évaluation économique en santé. En effet, les méthodes d'évaluation des bénéfices en santé, notamment au moyen des QALY, se rapprochent d'une mesure cardinale, contrairement au paradigme de la nouvelle économie du bien-être dans lequel elle est censée s'inscrire.
    Keywords: Economie du bien-être,Evaluation économique en santé,Epistémologie,Foucault
    Date: 2021–12–21
  9. By: Kevin Hjortshøj O’Rourke (Division of Social Science)
    Abstract: This chapter written for the Oxford Handbook of Historical Political Economy argues that you cannot understand the history of globalization without taking political factors into account; and that you cannot understand the history of comparative economic development without taking globalization into account. Globalization compels us to take geography seriously and to think more like historians.
    Date: 2022–01
  10. By: Sherwood, Charles
    Abstract: I argue that lying in business negotiations is pro tanto wrong and no less wrong than lying in other contexts. First, I assert that lying in general is pro tanto wrong. Then, I examine and refute five arguments to the effect that lying in a business context is less wrong than lying in other contexts. The common thought behind these arguments—based on consent, self-defence, the “greater good,” fiduciary duty, and practicality—is that the particular circumstances which are characteristic of business negotiations are such that the wrongness of lying is either mitigated or eliminated completely. I argue that all these “special exemption” arguments fail. I conclude that, in the absence of a credible argument to the contrary, the same moral constraints must apply to lying in business negotiations as apply to lying in other contexts. Furthermore, I show that for the negotiator, there are real practical benefits from not lying.
    Keywords: business ethics; negotiation; lying; consent; self-defence; fiduciary duty; CUP deal
    JEL: L81
    Date: 2021–12–23
  11. By: Antoine Missemer (CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, CIRED - Centre International de Recherche sur l'Environnement et le Développement - Cirad - Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - AgroParisTech - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: Le lexique économique employé pour désigner des composantes de la nature est souvent accusé de biaiser nos représentations et nos modes de gestion de l'environnement. Contribuant au processus de commodification de la nature, il aurait même sa part dans la dégradation des écosystèmes. Cet article revient sur l'histoire des concepts de services écosystémiques et de capital naturel pour mieux comprendre comment s'est forgée, il y a parfois longtemps, l'articulation lexicale entre économie et écologie. Il en ressort une lecture plus nuancée que celle d'un simple impérialisme scientifique opéré par l'économie sur nos représentations du monde naturel. Forcée au dialogue, la discipline économique n'apparaît pas si imperméable que cela à la réalité des dynamiques biophysiques et écosystémiques, à condition de connaître la portée véritable des mots que l'on emploie.
    Keywords: capital naturel,services écosystémiques,commodification,performativité,impérialisme scientifique,histoire de la pensée économique
    Date: 2021
  12. By: Brian Hill (HEC Paris - Recherche - Hors Laboratoire - HEC Paris - Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales, CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, GREGH - Groupement de Recherche et d'Etudes en Gestion à HEC - HEC Paris - Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Date: 2021

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