nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2023‒05‒01
five papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Manitoba

  1. Reflections on Geopolitics By Elsig, Manfred
  2. Who are the gatekeepers of economics? Geographic diversity, gender composition, and interlocking editorship of journal boards By Alberto Baccini; Cristina Re
  3. The Meaning of Debt in Classical Greece By Laurent Gauthier
  4. Gender and Collaboration. By Lorenzo Ductor; Sanjeev Goyal; Anja Prummer
  5. Prosocial Behavior and the Individual Normative Standard of Fairness within a Dynamic Context: Experimental Evidence By Mekvabishvili, Rati; Mekvabishvili, Elguja; Natsvaladze, Marine; Sirbiladze, Rusudan; Mzhavanadze, Giorgi; Deisadze, Salome

  1. By: Elsig, Manfred
    Abstract: Abstract The notion of geopolitics is widely used in public debates these days. This paper focuses on how the concept has evolved over time in the study of international economic cooperation focusing in particular on trade and investment policies. In light of international relations and international political economy perspectives, the paper discusses the origins of the concepts found in the early 20th century. It then describes how it was marginalized by mainstream theories during the Cold War period, albeit it was implicitly taken up by theorists in the tradition of offensive realism. The paper then maps the liberal turn of the 1990s in political economy and how power politics were further relegated to the background with increasing market integration. It was not until the 2000s when power politics made a slow return. Both academia and politics have been witnessing a surprising renaissance of geopolitics in the past 10 years. The paper maps out the contours of this new variant of geopolitics, a mix of superpower rivalry and economic nationalism, and offers some reflections regarding the danger of deterministic scenarios and ways to temper geopolitics going forward. Biography Prof. Manfred Elsig
    Date: 2023–04–12
  2. By: Alberto Baccini; Cristina Re
    Abstract: Members of editorial boards play the role of gatekeepers of science because. This paper analyses the national distribution of editorial boards members of economics journal, their affiliation, and their gender. It studies also the interlocking editorship network generated by the presence of a same person on the editorial board of more than one journal. The analysis is based on a unique database comprising all the 1, 516 journals indexed in the database EconLit with an active editorial board in 2019. For each journal, we manually collected the names of the board members along with their affiliation, obtaining a database containing more than 44, 000 members from more than 6, 000 institutions and 142 countries. These data allow to investigate the phenomenon of gatekeeping in contemporary economics on an unprecedented large scale. The obtained results highlight some common issues concerning the editorial gatekeeping, leading to the conclusion that in Economics the academic publishing environment is governed by an \'elite composed mainly of men affiliated with United States \'elite universities. Homophily in terms of geographic, institutional and gender distribution is higher in the most prestigious journal and among Editors-in-Chief. Finally, it appears that `strategic decisions' in the selection of board members reproduce this homophily.
    Date: 2023–04
  3. By: Laurent Gauthier (LED - Laboratoire d'Economie Dionysien - UP8 - Université Paris 8 Vincennes-Saint-Denis)
    Abstract: The study of ancient Greek economic thought is delicate, because the texts in which it is expressed can be interpreted in many ways, as evidenced by the long debate between primitivists and modernists. We examine a particular aspect of economic life, debt, following a lexicological approach, in order to grasp its perception by the ancient Greeks by studying the words associated with it. This lexicological perspective enables us to go beyond a purely economic analysis of debt relationships. We concentrate on the archaic and classical periods and show, through our analysis of how debt operated for the Greeks, that in spite of the presence of many sophisticated mechanisms closely resembling the modern concept of debt, there were fundamental distinctions.
    Keywords: Debt, Ancient Greece, Lexicology
    Date: 2023–02–16
  4. By: Lorenzo Ductor (Department of Economic Theory and Economic History, University of Granada.); Sanjeev Goyal (Christ's College and Faculty of Economics, Cambridge.); Anja Prummer (Johannes Kepler University Linz, Queen Mary University London.)
    Abstract: We connect gender disparities in research output and collaboration patterns in economics. We first document large gender gaps in research output. These gaps persist across 50 years despite a significant increase in the fraction of women in economics during that time. We further show that output differences are closely related to differences in the co-authorship networks of men and women; women have fewer collaborators, collaborate more often with the same co-authors, and a higher fraction of their co-authors collaborate with each other. Taking into account co-authorship networks reduces the gender output gap by 18%.
    Keywords: Gender Inequality, Co-authorship, Networks, Homophily.
    JEL: D8 D85 J7 J16 O30
    Date: 2023–04–13
  5. By: Mekvabishvili, Rati; Mekvabishvili, Elguja; Natsvaladze, Marine; Sirbiladze, Rusudan; Mzhavanadze, Giorgi; Deisadze, Salome
    Abstract: In this paper, we present an experimental study of prosocial behavior and individual normative standards of fairness under the novel context of a dynamic dictator game. In addition, we explore the role of informal institutions in shaping individuals’ cooperation within the domain of a public goods game under its direct exposure and in subsequent prosociality beyond its reach in the domain of the dictator game. We find that dictators’ average offers in our study are quite close to the typical results found in other dictator game experiments and they are quite stable over two periods. However, dictators become more selfish after they have had the experience of playing a public goods game with peer punishment. Interestingly, we found that dictators act significantly more selfishly relative to their own declared individual normative standard of fairness. Furthermore, our experiment reveals a large share of antisocial punishment in the public goods game and a peer-to-peer punishment mechanism to be an inefficient tool to promote cooperation, however in an environment that rules out a suitable normative consensus and collective choice.
    Keywords: dictator game; individual normative standard of fairness; dynamics of behavior; spillover; prosociality; public goods game;
    JEL: C73 C92 D02 H41
    Date: 2023–02–04

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