Introduction to Pluralism in Economics - From an Economics-without-Capitalism to Markets-without-Capitalism
Prof. Yanis Varoufakis talks in this introductory lecture about the future of our economy and the current state of economics with special regard to pluralism in economics.
This essay analyses how the role of central banks changed since the global financial crisis, and how this directional change was accelerated by the outbreak of Covid-19.
As the Covid-19 fueled economic downturn begins to intensify this winter, an extended study of the Italian cooperative sector’s historical resilience in times of crisis can serve as a learning experience for other countries seeking to create policies that foster more stable economies, with job security, care for marginalized communities and adequate counter-cyclical policies. Particularly, the Italian cooperative sector’s contributions to three aspects should be noted in closing. Firstly, the innovative phenomenon of cooperative enterprises has contributed to social inclusion of immigrant communities, the activation of youth, the unemployed and people with disabilities, a true compensation for both a market and state failure. Secondly, they have contributed to a reduction in income and wealth inequalities at a time when the issue of inequality is of global significance. Thirdly, the Italian cooperative movement has helped local communities revitalize in the face of demographic shifts and rendered them more resilient to the ravages of globalization. Each of these in their own right is a remarkable achievement.
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.
How countries achieve long-term GDP growth is up there with the most important topics in economics. As Nobel Laureate Robert Lucas put it “the consequences for human welfare involved in questions like these are simply staggering: once one starts to think about them, it is hard to think about anything else.” Ricardo Hausmann et al take a refreshing approach to this question in their Atlas of Economic Complexity. They argue a country’s growth depends on the complexity of its economy: it must have a diverse economy which produces a wide variety of products, including ones that cannot be produced much elsewhere. The Atlas goes into detail on exactly what complexity means, how it fits the data, and what this implies for development. Below I will offer a summary of their arguments, including some cool data visualisations.
The Great Recession 2.0 is unfolding before our very eyes. It is still in its early phase. But dynamics have been set in motion that are not easily stopped, or even slowed. If the virus effect were resolved by early summer—as some politicians wishfully believe—the economic dynamics set in motion would still continue. The US and global economies have been seriously ‘wounded’ and will not recover easily or soon. Those who believe it will be a ‘V-shape’ recovery are deluding themselves. Economists among them should know better but are among the most confused. They only need to look at historical parallels to convince themselves otherwise.
Environmental catastrophe looms large over politics: from the young person’s climate march to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal, increasing amounts of political space are devoted to the issue. Central to this debate is the question of whether economic growth inevitably leads to environmental issues such as depleted finite resources and increased waste, disruption of natural cycles and ecosystems, and of course climate change. Growth is the focal point of the de-growth and zero-growth movements who charge that despite efficiency gains, increased GDP always results in increased use of energy and emissions. On the other side of the debate, advocates of continued growth (largely mainstream economists) believe that technological progress and policies can ‘decouple’ growth from emissions.
This lecture briefly discusses historic understandings of the limits to infinite economic growth on a finite planet (from John Stuart Mill to Marx). Taking a ecological economics perspective it discusses the metabolism of the economy, the economy as a subsystem of the environment, biophysical limits to growth, and sustainable economic scales.
Beyond Growth is a collection of educational materials offering a reflection on growth. It was created as a joint project of the associations Fairbindung e. V. and Konzeptwerk Neue Ökonomie, both based in Germany. The page provides learning materials and methods to stimulate thinking about the conditions of our current economy as well as possible alternatives.
In this essay, the principle of capital accumulation, as well as the idea of homo economicus as the basis of the growth model, are located and analyzed from a feminist perspective. The sufficiency approach is presented as an alternative to these two economic logics.
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 this essay the authors take a look at how welfare could be provided in a degrowth society.
This film looks at the role economic growth has had in bringing about this crisis, and explores alternatives to it, offering a vision of hope for the future and a better life for all within planetary boundaries.
One method of economic modelling that has become increasingly popular in academia, government and the private sector is Agent Based Models, or ABM. These simulate the actions and interactions of thousands or even millions of people to try to understand the economy – for this reason ABM was once described to me as being “like Sim City without the graphics”. One advantage of ABM is that it is flexible, since you can choose how many agents there are (an agent just means some kind of 'economic decision maker' like a firm, consumer, worker or government); how they behave (do they use complicated or simple rules to make decisions?); as well as the environment they act in, then just run the simulation and see what happens as they interact over time.
In both economics textbooks and public perceptions central banks are a fact of life. On the wall of my A-level economics classroom there was the Will Rogers quote “there have been three great inventions since the beginning of time: fire, the wheel, and central banking”, summarising how many economists view the institution. There is a widespread belief that there is something different about money which calls for a central authority to manage its operation, a view shared even by staunch free marketeers such as Milton Friedman. This belief is not without justification, since money underpins every transaction in a way that apples do not, but we should always be careful not to take existing institutions for granted and central banking is no exception. In this post I will look at the idea of private or free banking, where banks compete (and cooperate) to issue their own currency.
Many economists refer to economic growth as a cake that is supposed to grow for the benefit of all.
Although sometimes used as synonyms, economic growth and economic development refer to different processes. While economic growth refers to an increase in real national income and output (i.e., GDP growth rate), economic development refers to an improvement in the quality of life and living standards (i.e., life expectancy).
With the onset of an economic crisis that has been universally acknowledged since the end of March, two main questions arise: To what extent is the corona pandemic the starting point (or even the cause) of this crisis? And secondly: can the aid programmes that have been adopted prevent a deep and prolonged recession?
Dr. Katherine Trebeck explains some reasons why we should believe the future of the economy should be a wellbeing economy.
Exploring Economics, an open-access e-learning platform, giving you the opportunity to discover & study a variety of economic theories, topics, and methods.
Within the heterodox field one of the most active topics is related to the theory of economic growth and distribution This is a textbook for advance undergraduate and graduate students Throughout its 18 chapters Classical Neoclassical and post Keynesian models are developed Each chapter contains study problems and suggested readings …
Innovation Resilience and Social Responsibility The Italian Cooperative Sector is amongst the largest in the world comprising over 60 000 cooperatives from all sectors of the economy directly employing 1 3 million people Cooperatives created close to 30 percent of new jobs in Italy between 2001 and 2011 demonstrating that …
In spite of the manifold critique about the state of economics in the aftermath of the financial crisis, an even increasing presence of economists and economic experts can be observed in the public sphere during the last years. On the one hand this reflects the still dominant position of economics in the social sciences as well as the sometimes ignorant attitude of economists towards findings of other social sciences. On the other hand this paper shows that the public debate on politico-economic issues among economists is dominated by a specific subgroup of economists, tightly connected to an institutional network of “German neoliberalism”. This group of “public economists” (i) is dominant in public debates even after the financial crisis, (ii) reproduces the formative German economic imaginary of the Social Market Economy in a German neoliberal interpretation and (iii) has a good access to German economic policymaking, rooted in a long history of economic policy advice.
This report presents the results of the “Financial Mechanisms for Innovative Social and Solidarity Economy Ecosystems” project, designed to foster a better understanding of the different ways in which financial resources can be made available and accessed to support the growth of social and solidarity economy (SSE) organizations and their ecosystems. The project is supported by the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social and Solidarity Economy of the Government of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
Decoupling debunked: Evidence and arguments against green growth as a sole strategy for sustainability
From the theoretical literature, the authors provide seven reasons to be sceptical about the occurrence of sufficient decoupling in the future. In addition to the extensive summary of the recent literature, 'decoupling debunked' provides a great introduction into the decoupling hypothesis.
This article demonstrates Schumpeter s propagated approach to monetary analysis in macroeconomics so as to provide for a better understanding of the relation between finance and growth Peter Bofinger Lisa Geißendörfer Thomas Haas Fabian Mayer voxEU
In this article, the Harvard Business Review recognizes the arguments of the Degrowth vision and gives examples of businesses that have thrived following its precepts. The authors suggest three strategies that firms should put into action to be at the forefront of this movement. The article also gives a brief overview of what the degrowth is about and its main criticisms.
In this essay, Professor Robert Pollin explores the short falls of the degrowth perspective in handling the impending environmental collapse as well as elaborates on the efficacies of a green new deal.
The COVID-19 pandemic has had far-reaching implications across the African continent. This discussion brings to light the role of African think tanks, such as the African Center for Economic Transformation (ACET) in rethinking the continent’s development models, especially, in light of the unprecedented crisis.
Irene van Staveren, professor of pluralist development economics, presents her pluralist teaching method for the introductory level. Based on her textbook “Economics After the Crisis: An Introduction to Economics from a Pluralist and Global Perspective” she suggests to focus on real-world problems and pari passu apply economic theories such as Social economics, Institutional economics, Post-Keynesian economics as well as Neoclassical economics without wasting time to single out the latter. Besides pointing out advantages of such a pluralist method Irene illustrates her approach based on interesting topics such as growth or feminist economics.
A comprehensive textbook on contemporary Global Political Economy and its historical evolution providing a broad-ranging and even-handed introduction to the subject by covering traditional elements (such as trade and finance) while also analysing issues such as gender, environment and labour.
Marxian Political Economy focuses on the exploitation of labour by capital. The economy is not conceived as consisting of neutral transactions for exchange and cooperation, but instead as having developed historically out of asymmetric distributions of power, ideology and social conflicts.