Heterodox Economics Newsletter
Some weeks ago, the AEA has finished its discussion on a 'code of professional conduct' for economists and published a final version on its website (see here). I think it is fair to say that the outcome is ambitious and raises new challenges and questions for economists.
For one, the code is in favor of a "disinterested assessment of ideas" and the "acknowledgement of limits of expertise". These criteria are noteworthy as they emphasize intellectual versatility and openness as well as modesty, concerns that economists are not really famous for. It is, for instance, easy to show that mainstream researchers typically neglect heterodox contributions or that the top 5 journals enjoy an exceptional status in economics, which imposes additonal constraints on the diversity of ideas and approaches represented in economics (see here and here). Also, in supposedly innocent empirical works the role of conceptual priors in assesing one's measurement - what philosophers would call the "theory-loadenness" of observation - is often underestimated in its impact. Typical examples in economics are the tendency to ask what kind of incentives or preferences could drive some behavior (thereby presupposing utility maximization) or the often found practice to equate the marginal contribution of some factor with its relative share in income (thereby presupposing marginal productivity theory; see also here).
For another, the AEA's code also encourages "equal opportunity and fair treatment for all economists, regardless of age, sex, gender identity and expression, race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, health condition, marital status, parental status, genetic information, political affiliation, professional status, or personal connections" and, hence, covers a broad territory of possible reasons for discrimination. Against this backdrop, it would be great to see the code inspiring new research agendas, e.g. on whether being a women or member of a minority-group has a measurable impact on citations received or other measures of scientific visibility (see here or here for related examples).
In sum, I think the code of conduct is a noteworthy initiative by the AEA to increase the standards of the economic conversation and it remains to be seen whether this initiative has any lasting effects on our disciplinary standards.
All the best,
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Table of contents
- Call for Papers
- 24th Annual Conference on Alternative Economic Policy in Europe: Deadline Extension
- Conference of the History of Economic Thought Society of Australia (Perth, September 2018)
- Conference on "Labor Theory of Value and the Social Sciences" (Brasilia, Oct 2018)
- Frontiers in Sociology & Frontiers in Public Health: Special Issue on "Perspectives and Theories of Social Innovation for Ageing Population"
- Historical Materialism: 15th Annual Conference "Taking on the Right" (London, November 2018)
- International Confrence of Political Economy (ICOPEC) 2018 (Athens, September 2018)
- Journal of Institutional Economics: Special Issue on the "Institutional Analysis of Gift"
- Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences: Special Issue on "Living Well: Histories of Emotions, Wellness & Human Flourishing"
- NEA @ ASSA (Atlanta, Jan 2019)
- Call for Participants
- Poznań Summer School in Heterodox Economics (Poznan, Sep 2018)
- Symposium on "Studying Economics and Finance differently" (Fribourg, June 2018)
- The 82nd JSHET Conference (Tokyo, June 2018)
- Conference Papers, Reports, and Podcasts
- 27th Annual Hyman P. Minsky Conference
- Job Postings
- Bard College, US
- TU Chemnitz, GER
- Cambridge Journal of Economics, 42 (3)
- Economic Thought, 7 (1)
- Economy and Society, 47 (1)
- European Journal of Economics and Economic Policies: Intervention, 15 (1)
- Forum for Social Economics, 47 (2)
- Moneta e Credito December, Vol. 71 (281)
- Research in the History of Economic Thought and Methodology, 36 (A)
- Review of Social Economy, 76 (2)
- The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, 25 (1)
- World Review of Political Economy, 9 (1)
- Books and Book Series
- A World to Win – The Life and Works of Karl Marx
- Clashing over Commerce: A History of U.S. Trade Policy
- Finance Capital Today: Corporations and Banks in the Lasting Global Slump
- Handbook of Research Methods and Applications in Heterodox Economics
- Re-Engineering Humanity
- Work - The Last 1,000 Years
- Heterodox Graduate Programs, Scholarships and Grants
- Copenhagen Business School: PhD opportunity in ""Professional and Corporate Networks"
- WEA Commentaries, 8 (2)
- For Your Information
- Call for Nominations for Editor of the Journal of Economic Methodology
- The influence of the Koch Foundation on the George Mason University