In this book, the author critically examines a number of socialist proposals that have been put forward since the end of the Cold War. It is shown that although these proposals have many merits, their inability effectively to incorporate the benefits of information technology into their models has limited their ability to solve the problem of socialist construction. The final section of the book proposes an entirely new model of socialist development, based on a "needs profile" that makes it possible to convert the needs of large numbers of people into data that can be used as a guide for resource allocation. This analysis makes it possible to rethink and carefully specify the conditions necessary for the abolition of capital and consequently the requirements for socialist revolution and, ultimately, communist society.
Historical Alternatives to Mass Production: Politics, Markets and Technology in Nineteenth-Century Industrialization
Sabel and Zeitlin present the persistence of small firms in Europe against the rise of mass production and modern enterprises Their article starts by analysing how mass production can be considered a historical necessity for the classical view as it is a highly specialized structure where man and machine can …
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).
This lecture was held in the context of the a two day conference called Which pluralism for thinking about how to achieve a more sustainable and resilient economy The practices institutions and system logics of today s economy are not suitable for appropriately addressing fundamental human needs The climate crisis …
The human imprint on the biosphere has become so pronounced in recent years that there has been talk of a new geological era, the 'Anthropocene'.
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.
The notion that the demand and supply side are independent is a key feature of textbook undergraduate economics and of modern macroeconomic models. Economic output is thought to be constrained by the productive capabilities of the economy - the ‘supply-side' - through technology, demographics and capital investment. In the short run a boost in demand may increase GDP and employment due to frictions such as sticky wages, but over the long-term successive rises in demand without corresponding improvements on the supply side can only create inflation as the economy reaches capacity. In this post I will explore the alternative idea of demand-led growth, where an increase in demand can translate into long-run supply side gains. This theory is most commonly associated with post-Keynesian economics, though it has been increasingly recognised in the mainstream literature.
In the second video of the series Investigating International Finance, an alternative view on capital controls is given contrasting with the paradigm of classical trade theory which suggests that the removal of trade and capital barriers is associated with higher market efficiency. After explaining the conceptual mechanisms underlying capital controls, examples are introduced where countries actually apply capital controls and how these controls have been associated with a lesser exposure to international financial crises spillovers.
In the second video of the series Investigating International Finance, an alternative view on capital controls is given contrasting with the paradigm of classical trade theory suggesting that the removal of trade and capital barriers is associated with higher market efficiency. After explaining the conceptual mechanisms underlying capital controls, examples are introduced where countries actually apply capital controls and how these controls have been associated with a lesser exposure to international financial crises spillovers.
In the interview, Robert Skidelsky discusses the emergence of political influence of a certain school of economic thought and how the success of an economic theory depends on the power relations in the society. He introduces the historical example of Keynesian economics and its replacement by liberal economic theory and policy in the aftermath of the Great Depression, and transfers this historical case to the dominant paradigm of austerity policies in the Europe as response to rising public debts caused by the Financial Crisis. He contrasts austerity policies with a Keynesian approach. Furthermore, he relates the targets of policy to the underlying power structures, for example when not the reduction of unemployment but the protection of financial capital is politically addressed.
First the emergence of the Austrian school is described regarding the historical context and other schools of thought that were presence at its inception. Emphasis is given to the methodological differences and disputes that members of the Austrian schools had with representatives of the German historical school. Then some defining theoretical and methodological features of the Austrian school are explained. Later, Friedrun Quaas gives an overview of the different generations of scholars associated with the school and their theories, research questions and concepts. Against the background of this knowledge the question as to whether the question as to whether the Austrian school is sufficiently homogenous to denote a consistent paradigm is discussed. At the end, some general, philosophy of science oriented, questions concerning pluralism in the social sciences are posed.
Since Daniel Kahneman won the Nobel Memorial Price in Economic Sciences in 2002, a new branch of economics gained academic and popular interest. That is, the so-called area of behavioural economics. However, some scholars claim that this new area of economics is not changing much of the mainstream paradigm. Why?
Keynes, following the tradition of Marx, argued that all values are created by labour and profits. However, functional income distribution between wages and profits is explained differently. In Marx's explanation of functional income distribution, wages are given as a basket of goods needed for the reproduction needs of the working class. Profits are then the remaining part of income creation. Given the capital stock, the profit rate can be calculated. The paper shows that Marx's explanation of functional income distribution has several theoretical and practical shortcomings. The Keynesian paradigm in the tradition of the original Keynes provides an alternative. Here the profit rate is given by processes in the financial market, and, among other things, by the interest rate. Monopolistic or oligopolistic structures, following the tradition of Kalecki, can also influence the profit rate. In addition, financialisation can push up the profit rate. Given the capital stock the consumption basket of workers depends on the level of productivity and the profit rate explained in a Keynesian and Kaleckian way.
Teaching Feminist Economics. Conceptual Notes and Practical Advice for Teaching a Subject in the Making
Teaching feminist economics is a relatively new didactical project posing questions of content and methodology for instructors. The article proposes three possible topics with regard to the changing nature of the emergent research field: introducing feminist economics as a mode of questioning, showing its historicity and spectrum, and asking the question of a unifying paradigm.
This is the first intermediate microeconomics textbook to offer both a theoretical and real-world grounding in the subject. Relying on simple algebraic equations, and developed over years of classroom testing, it covers factually oriented models in addition to the neoclassical paradigm, and goes beyond theoretical analysis to consider practical realities.
This book challenges the mainstream paradigm, based on the inter-temporal optimisation of welfare by individual agents. It introduces a methodology for studying how institutions create flows of income, expenditure and production together with stocks of assets and liabilities, thereby determining how whole economies evolve through time.
Modern mission theory is guided largely by the three self paradigm that suggests indigenous churches can only be healthy if they are self-governing, self-propagating, and self-supporting. Consequently, Western missionaries, their churches, and their agencies have been increasingly indisposed to giving generously. We must rethink the interplay of dollars dependency and what it means to do the right thing with our money as we pursue twenty-first century missions.
Rethinking Business is a volume of thought-provoking researches that sets out to challenge the paradigm of business along the areas of governance, finance, corporate social responsibility, and sustainability.
Paul Mason presents the main arguments of his book PostCapitalism. First, he argues that capitalism runs out of its capability to adapt to crises and second states that information technology challenges the capitalist system. In a nutshell, he argues that a society which fully exploits information technologies can't include concepts such as intellectual property, free market or private ownership. This has far-reaching consequences for the organisation of wages and work. The talk stops at minute 37.30.
The lecture begins by highlighting the importance of the entrepreneur for the economic process and by coitizing mainstream managerial economics for not paying enough attention to this. Austrian economics, by contrast, provides a theory of the entrepreneur, who is acting in an uncertain context about changes in consumer preferences, technology, and factor prices. The most important signal for determining whether entrepreneurs are successful in anticipating consumers' demand are their profits, which are defined as the residual that remains once factor costs are subtracted from revenues. Additionally, examples for entrepreneurship as well as the inefficiency of government investment are discussed.
While many are unsatisfied with capitalism and critique it in highly sophisticated ways, there are few concrete proposals for a socialist mode of production that could replace the capitalist one. Daniel E. Saros has developed such a proposal in his book "Information Technology and Socialist Construction – The End of Capital and the Transition to Socialism" which we discuss at length over the course of two episodes.
"Energy issues have always been important in international relations, but in recent years may have become even more important than in the past due to the widespread awareness of existing limits to energy sources and negative climate impacts. The course discusses global trends in energy consumption and production, various available scenarios for potential developments in the coming decades, the availability of oil reserves and the evolution of the oil industry. It then discusses natural gas and highlights the differences between oil and gas. It will also discuss renewable energy sources, nuclear energy and EU energy policy. The course aims at providing students whose main interest is in international relations a background on energy resources, technology and economic realities to allow them to correctly interpret the political impact of current developments. It also aims at providing students, who already have a technical background in energy science or engineering, with the broad global view of energy issues that will allow them to better understand the social, economic and political impact of their technical knowledge."
Big challenges lie ahead for our society: increased automation of work, and the threat of catastrophic climate change. But so, too, are the huge possibilities presented by new technology and better ways of organising our economy in the wake of neoliberalism's failure.
Examine what would happen if we were to deploy blockchain technology at the sovereign level and use it to create a decentralized cashless economy. This book explains how finance and economics work today, and how the convergence of various technologies related to the financial sector can help us find solutions to problems, such as excessive debt creation, banks getting too big to fail, and shadow banking.
Three dominant forces worldwide are driving change today in our financial markets: competition, technology and regulation. But their collective impact in reshaping the markets, though they may be viewed individually as desirable or well-intentioned, is producing challenging results that are difficult to predict, hard to control and not easy to understand.
As the global economic landscape evolves, demographics shift, inequality expands, climate change gets worse and technology continues to advance at breakneck speed, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is struggling to stay relevant.
From the two premises that (1) economies are complex systems and (2) the accumulation of knowledge about reality is desirable, I derive the conclusion that pluralism with regard to economic research programs is a more viable position to hold than monism. To substantiate this claim an epistemological framework of how scholars study their objects of inquiry and relate their models to reality is discussed. Furthermore, it is argued that given the current institutions of our scientific system, economics self-organizes towards a state of scientific unity. Since such a state is epistemologically inferior to a state of plurality, critical intervention is desirable.
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 objective of the course is to explore the main strengths and weaknesses of orthodox and heterodox paradigms within development economics.
A review of:  Intermediate Microeconomics, H.R. Varian  Mikrooekonomie, R.S. Pindyck, D.L. Rubinfeld  Grundzuege der mikrooekonomischen Theorie, J. Schumann, U. Meyer, W. Stroebele
In this essay the authors take a look at how welfare could be provided in a degrowth society.
Dependency in Central and Eastern Europe - Self-reliance and the need to move beyond economic growth
In this essay, the author takes a critical perspective on the pursuit of growth as the solution for providing for environmental sustainability and economic stability in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe. Drawing from the framework of dependency theory and presenting brief insights into European core-periphery relations the author then argues for the implementation of an alternative strategy to development that is built around the concept of self-reliance.