This course focus on the behaviour of individuals from an pluralist economic and an interdisciplinary bevavioural science apprach.
Professor Jennifer Clapp explains the dynamics of financialization of land and agricultural commodities in Subsaharan Africa. She points to the historical roots of accelerated land speculation and their connection to financial institutions, both generating and reinforcing the process of financialization of African land. Besides talking about roots and dynamics of speculation with land on financial markets, she puts the perspective of scholarly investigation onto the investor's side in discussing guidelines of responsible investment and regulation in the front instead of focussing on the receiving countries.
This course will introduce key concepts, theories and methods from socioeconomics. The first part of the course, will deal with the main economic actors and how their interactions are governed. Markets are seen as sets of social institutions. Institutions shape how consumers, firms and other economic actors behave. While it is difficult to understand how novelty emerges, we can study the conditions that are conducive to innovation. We will review how economic performance, social progress and human wellbeing are measured and what progress has been made. In the second part of the course, we will study a specific macroeconomic model that accounts for biophysical boundaries and inequality.
This course provides future change makers in public and private sectors with a comprehensive overview on the structures and actors that shape markets.
Neoclassical economics focuses on the allocation of scarce resources. Economic analysis is mainly concerned with determining the efficient allocation of resources in order to increase welfare.
In a capitalist system, consumers, investors, and corporations orient their activities toward a future that contains opportunities and risks. How actors assess uncertainty is a problem that economists have tried to solve through general equilibrium and rational expectations theory. Powerful as these analytical tools are, they underestimate the future's unknowability by assuming that markets, in the aggregate, correctly forecast what is to come.
Uncertain Futures considers how economic actors visualize the future and decide how to act in conditions of radical uncertainty. It starts from the premise that dynamic capitalist economies are characterized by relentless innovation and novelty and hence exhibit an indeterminacy that cannot be reduced to measurable risk.
This book provides a new methodological approach to money and macroeconomics. Realizing that the abstract equilibrium models lacked descriptions of fundamental issues of a modern monetary economy, the focus of this book lies on the (stylized) balance sheets of the main actors. Money, after all, is born on the balance sheets of the central bank or commercial bank.
The Canadian author and journalist Richard Swift takes the listener on a journey to different degrowth projects. During the visits concepts of the degrowth movement are explained and practical examples are highlighted. In the elaborate programme different actors of the international degrowth movement get to speak (e.g. Joan Martinez Alier, Federico Demaria).
Hartmut Kliemt first traces the concept of the homo oeconomicus back to the philosophy of Spinoza and Hobbes. Then he addresses criticisms of this concept in particular by discussing the ultimatum game as a strong piece of counterevidence. After this, he outlines a difference in the behavioural sciences between internal perspectives that seek to understand actors' cognitive processes and external perspectives, which look at observed behaviour only.
The Sufficiency Policy Map is an online tool for initiatives, political actors, organisations and individuals. It provides recommendations, strategies and communication tools for realizing projects and policy around the topic sufficiency. Sufficiency projects have the aim to reduce one's own ecological footprint.
A multimedia dossier outlining the various dimensions of credit and indebtedness for various actors such as individuals and governments. Special emphasis is put on the reflections of normative and power laden discourse sorrounding the issue of borrowing and on false analogies placed between household and government debt.
As a response to ongoing economic, social and environmental crises, many private actors have enlarged their definition of 'value' to include environmental and social elements. Such practices, however, appear incompatible with the current epistemological structure of academic financial discourse.
With a focus on Chile, Pinochet’s Economic Accomplices: An Unequal Country byForce uses theoretical arguments and empirical studies to argue that focusing onthe behavior of economic actors of the dictatorship is crucial to achieve basic objectivesin terms of justice, memory, reparation, and non-repetition measures.
Institutional economics focuses on the role of social institutions in terms of laws or contracts, but also those of social norms and patterns of human behaviour that are connected to the social organisation of production, distribution and consumption in the economy.
Evolutionary economics focuses on economic change. Hence processes of change such as growth, innovation, structural and technological change, as well as economic development in general are analysed. Evolutionary economics often gives emphasis to populations and (sub-)systems.
Austrian economics focuses on the economic coordination of individuals in a market economy. Austrian economics emphasises individualism, subjectivism, laissez-faire politics, uncertainty and the role of the entrepreneur, amongst others.
If there’s one method economists have neglected the most, it’s qualitative research. Whereas economists favour mathematical models and statistics, qualitative research seeks to understand the world through intensive investigation of particular circumstances, which usually entails interviewing people directly about their experiences. While this may sound simple to quantitative types the style, purpose, context, and interpretation of an interview can vary widely. Because of this variety, I have written a longer post than usual on this topic rather than doing it a disservice. Having said that, examples of qualitative research in economics are sadly scant enough that it doesn’t warrant multiple posts. In this post I will introduce qualitative research in general with nods to several applications including the study of firm behaviour, race, Austrian economics, and health economics. More than usual I will utilise block quotes, which I feel is in the spirit of the topic.
The global financial crisis (GFC) led to increasing distrust in economic research and the economics profession, in the process of which the current state of economics and economic education in particular were heavily criticized. Against this background we conducted a study with undergraduate students of economics in order to capture their view of economic education.
What made the false assumption that saving the economy at all cost during a pandemic so popular? This paper discusses different pathways through the COVID-19 pandemic at national and international level, and their consequences on the health of citizens and their economies.
By conducting a discourse analysis (SKAD) in the field of academic economics textbooks, this paper aims at reconstructing frames and identity options offered to undergraduate students relating to the questions ‘Why study economics?’ and ‘Who do I become by studying economics?’. The analysis showed three major frames and respective identity offerings, all of which are contextualized theoretically, with prominent reference to the Foucauldian reflection of the science of Political Economy. Surprisingly, none of them encourages the student to think critically, as could have been expected in a pedagogical context. Taken together, economics textbooks appear as a “total structure of actions brought to bear upon possible action” (Foucault), therefore, as a genuine example of Foucauldian power structures.
This article, looks at the complex interaction between an urban economy and the vegetation within that urban area. In summary, numerous studies have found a positive link between increased vegetation and social as well as personal health. It makes a case for increasing urban vegetation as a way to benefit local economies.
What influence do changes in tax policy or state decisions on expenditure have on economic growth? For decades, this question has been controversially debated.
Social and Solidarity Economy (SSE) and Feminist Economics make a conjoint statement: The way we see the economic system has nothing to do with human beings nor those who have been surviving outside the market.
This chapter discusses the role of gender in economic relations, processes, and outcomes. Gender differences in economic outcomes such as labor force participation and wages have received growing attention from economists in the last several decades – a positive and much needed development in economic thinking.
How can we establish new institutions and practices in order to use fare-free public transport as a beacon for sustainable mobility and a low-carbon lifestyle? The author of this essay elaborates on how practice theory and institutional economics can help to answer this question.
Politics as supermarket? Or how current policy design changes the relationship between the state and its citizens
What are the implications of the politics of "behavioural change"? Alexander Feldmann took a closer look for you on nudging and framing and if this is a legitimate instrument being used by the state to make us behave better in terms of our carbon footprint.
This paper starts with an evaluation of three common arguments against pluralism in economics: (1) the claim that economics is already pluralist, (2) the argument that if there was the need for greater plurality, it would emerge on its own, and (3) the assertion that pluralism means ‘anything goes’ and is thus unscientific. Pluralist responses to all three arguments are summarized. The third argument is identified to relate to a greater challenge for pluralism: an epistemological trade-off between diversity and consensus that suggests moving from a discussion about ‘pros’ and ‘cons’ towards a discussion about the adequate degree of plurality. We instantiate the trade-off by showing how it originates from two main challenges: the need to derive adequate quality criteria for a pluralist economics, and the necessity to propose strategies that ensure the communication across different research programs. The paper concludes with some strategies to meet these challenges.
The article pursues the two related questions of how economists pretend to know and why they want to know at all. It is argued that both the economic form of knowledge and the motivation of knowing have undergone a fundamental change during the course of the 20th century. The knowledge of important contemporary economic textbooks has little in common with an objective, decidedly scientifically motivated knowledge. Rather, their contents and forms follow a productive end, aiming at the subjectivity of their readers.
On July 2020 ZOE-Institute published a unique platform for transformative policymaking: Sustainable Prosperity. Building on insights from new economic thinking the platform provides knowledge about ideas, arguments and procedures that support effective promotion of political change. It aims to strengthen change makers in public policy institutions, who are working on an ambitious green and just transition. As such, it provides convincing arguments and policy ideas to overcome the reliance of economic policy on GDP growth
The outbreak of COVID-19 has substantially accelerated the digitalization of the economy. Yet, this unprecedented growth of digital technology brought novel challenges to the labour market. Rise in income inequalities and precarious working conditions or polarization of jobs. In this essay, we try to assess what tools to use to counter these trends.
Capitalism is dissolving boundaries - not only in the sense of ever-expanding global trade flows, but also in the concrete everyday working lives of individuals. What implications does this have for our understanding of freedom, work and borders?