By J. E. King
'A iteration in the past Dudley Dillard wrote a recognized article at the 'barter phantasm in classical and neoclassical economics'. Now John King has long past a step extra and written concerning the microfoundations myth. the semblance has been with us for a long time, the fantasy is of newer classic. jointly they've got blocked a uncomplicated realizing of macroeconomic and fiscal phenomena at a time after they are so much urgently wanted. this can be a e-book that needed to be written, and we're lucky that it really is John King who has written it. crucial examining for our times.'
- John Smithin, York college, Canada
In this tough ebook, John King makes a sustained and complete assault at the dogma that macroeconomic idea should have 'rigorous microfoundations'. He attracts on either the philosophy of technological know-how and the heritage of financial concept to illustrate the hazards of foundational metaphors and the defects of micro-reduction as a methodological precept. robust feedback of the microfoundations dogma is documented in nice element, from a few mainstream and plenty of heterodox economists and in addition from financial methodologists, social theorists and evolutionary biologists. the writer argues for the relative autonomy of macroeconomics as a different 'special science', cooperating with yet most likely now not reducible to microeconomics.
The Microfoundations Delusion will end up a stimulating and thought-provoking learn for students, scholars and researchers within the fields of economics, heterodox economics and historical past of monetary thought.
Contents: 1. creation half I: Microfoundations and the Philosophy of technological know-how 2. Microfoundations as a (Bad) Metaphor three. Microfoundations as Micro-reduction four. Case stories: Biology and Social technological know-how half II: Microfoundations within the historical past of Economics and different Social Sciences five. 'Microfoundations' within the Literature of Economics, half I: 1936-1975 6. Microfoundations within the Literature of Economics, half II: 1975 2012 7. Crossing the Border: 'Microfoundations' within the different Social Sciences half III: Dissenting Voices eight. The Dissenters, half I: The publish Keynesians nine. The Dissenters, half II: Mainstreamers, Austrians and Institutionalists 10. the industrial Methodologists and Microfoundations eleven. end References Index
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Additional resources for The Microfoundations Delusion: Metaphor and Dogma in the History of Macroeconomics
That is why we need traffic engineers, urban sociologists, town planners and political economists. I shall have much more to say about emergent properties in Chapter 4. The two principles are linked, since one reason why ‘it is not a trivial matter to infer the properties of the whole’ is the phenomenon of downward causation. To understand the causes of changes in car components over time, we need more than knowledge of metallurgy, chemistry and particle physics, more even than complete knowledge of these things; we also need to know about society, politics, psychology and economics.
Rejection of microfoundations does not require me to deny the relevance of microeconomics to macroeconomics (or for that matter vice versa). All that I am claiming is that the two bodies of knowledge exist side by side, neither being the foundation of the other. My target is what Steven Pinker rather perversely describes as ‘bad’, ‘greedy’ or ‘destructive reductionism’. I have no objection to what Pinker terms ‘good reductionism’, which ‘consists not of replacing one field of knowledge with another but of connecting or unifying them.
The nineteenth-century case for emergence failed, as McLaughlin relates, on empirical grounds: the necessary emergent properties were simply not there to be discovered. Almost a century later, in the 1920s and early 1930s, the Vienna Circle debated the ‘unity of science’. One of its members, the Austrian positivist philosopher Otto Neurath, discussed the unification of science with his fellow exile Friedrich von Hayek in the early 1940s. As John O’Neill has noted, this is a complicated issue: The project could take a number of forms: (i) a reductionist project in which all the sciences would be logically derivable via bridge-laws from physics; (ii) a programme for a unified method which would be followed by all sciences; (iii) a project for a unified language of science; and (iv) a project that would integrate the different sciences, such that, on any specific problem, all relevant sciences Downloaded from Elgar Online by Monash University at 07/23/2013 11:53:15AM Columns Design XML Ltd / Job: King-Microfoundations_Delusion / Division: 04-Chapter03 /Pg.