Heterodox Economics Newsletter

Issue 241 January 14, 2019 web pdf Heterodox Economics Directory

It is my great pleasure to announce that the Heterodox Economics Newsletter has found a new home – the Institute for Socio-Economics at University Duisburg-Essen in Germany. The main reason for this transition is that since 2019 I have the honor to serve as a Professor for Pluralist Economics at said Institute. This change not only brings new opportunities for the Newsletter, but also enriches my personal prospects as I get to collaborate with a series of fantastic researchers in Duisburg-Essen including, but not limited to, Paul Marx, Miriam Rehm and Till van Treeck.

The Institute for Socio-Economics at University Duisburg-Essen has only recently been established and its basic mission is to do research on traditional economic issues as well as contemporary social challenges from an interdisciplinary and pluralist viewpoint, that is, based on the integration of insights from different economic traditions as well as from different academic disciplines. While one can label such an approach in different ways – as, for instance, ‘socio-economics’, ‘pluralist economics’ or, simply, ‘Political Economy’ – it has several distinctive features that make it different from, although not hostile towards, a more traditional (‘mainstream’) approach to economic research.

Personally, I try to guide my understanding of this field by referring to the works of the eminent pluralist economist Kurt W. Rothschild, who posited not only that a “plurality of paradigms in economics and in social sciences in general is […] a necessary and desirable phenomenon in a very complex and continually changing subject” (see here), but also emphasized that any serious Political Economy-approach “has to venture in to new fields of socio-economic interdependencies and dynamic processes, which cannot so easily be put into a rigid framework”. In doing so, it has to be “interdisciplinary” in nature, should devote “special consideration [to] power and conflicting interests, behavioral assumptions and the role of institutional change” and signal an “all-pervading awareness that political and other non-economic factors play an important role in shaping economic processes” (see here, p. 11).

Since the Institute for Socio-Economics is currently expanding, we also have two open positions on empirical inequality research (see here) as well as pluralist economics/political economy (see here) – so in case you want to join us in our mission, we would be happy to receive your applications by the end of January. In the future – hopefully starting in fall 2019 – the Institute will also offer a Master’s program in Socio-Economics, which is open to students of different disciplinary origins. More information on this program can be found in future issues of the Heterodox Economics Newsletter.

Eventually, some readers might ask what will happen to the established base of the Newsletter – the Institute for Comprehensive Analysis of the Economy at Johannes Kepler University Linz. In this context, I want to assure you that our work in Linz will continue: there is still a great team working in Linz, comprising several exceptional researchers (like Philipp Heimberger, Claudius Gräbner, Stephan Pühringer, Bernhard Schütz and others), who will eagerly carry on with our work there. In this context, I also wanted to thank the University of Linz and the Austrian Chamber of Labor, which both supported the publication of the Newsletter in the past five years.

Finally, I want to thank all the people, who made this possible and supported me so much over the past years. Many thanks for this.

All the best,

Jakob

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