Herbert Simon (1916-2001) is mostly celebrated for the theory of bounded rationality and satisficing. This book of essays on Models of Simon tackles these topics that the he broached in a professional career spanning more than 60 years. Expository material on the fundamental concepts he introduced are re-interpreted in terms of the theory of computability.
This volume frames the behavioural issues of concern for economists, such as: hierarchy, causality, near-diagonal linear dynamical systems, discovery, the contrasts between the notion of heuristics, and the Church-Turing Thesis of Computability Theory. There is, consistently, an emphasis on the historical origins of the concepts Simon worked with, in emphasising Human Problem Solving and Decision Making – by rational individuals and institutions (like Organizations). The main feature of the results in the book are its emphasis on the procedural aspects of human problem solving, decision making and the remarkable way Simon harnessed many tools of mathematical logic, mathematics, cognitive sciences, economics and econometrics.
This long-awaited volume is an important read for those who study economic theory and philosophy, microeconomics and political economy, as well as those interested in the great Herbert Simon’s work.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction, 2. Herbert Simon: a life, 3. Classical - or Cognitive - Behavioural Economics (CBE) versus Modern Behavioural Economics (MBE), 4. The zeitgeist: cybernetics, servomechanisms, information, communication and computation, 5. Heuristics versus algorithms, 6. Computable and computational complexity theoretic bases for cognitive behavioural economics, 7. Notes on hierarchic, near-decomposable, causal, evolutionary dynamics: The Architecture of Complexity, 8. Gandy's Mechanisms Modelling the Rationality of Organizations by March & Simon, 9. Towards a Classical Behavioural Finance Theory, 10. Intuitionistic foundations for economic theory: a Brouwer-Simon research programme, 11. A crooked path along The Gravel Walks. Appendices. Index
Kumaraswamy Vela Velupillai is a retired Emeritus Professor, living in Stockholm, Sweden. He was, formerly the John E. Cairnes Professor of Economics at NUI Galway, Ireland, a Professore di Chiara Fama in the department of economics at the University of Trento, Italy – from both tenured posts he opted for early retirement. He was, for a very short period, also (a non-tenured) Distinguished Professor of Economics at NSSR, in New York.