Economics has developed into one of the most specialised social sciences. Yet at the same time, it shares its subject matter with other social sciences and humanities and its method of analysis has developed in close correspondence with the natural and life sciences. This book offers an up to date assessment of economics in relation to other disciplines.
This edited collection explores fields as diverse as mathematics, physics, biology, medicine, sociology, architecture, and literature, drawing from selected contributions to the 2005 Annual Conference of the European Society for the History of Economic Thought (ESHET). There is currently much discussion at the leading edges of modern economics about openness to other disciplines, such as psychology and sociology. But what we see here is that economics has drawn on (as well as contributed to) other disciplines throughout its history. In this sense, in spite of the increasing specialisation within all disciplines, economics has always been an open discipline and the chapters in this volume provide a vivid illustration for this.
Open Economics is a testament to the intellectual vibrancy of historical research in economics. It presents the reader with a historical introduction to the disciplinary context of economics that is the first of its kind, and will appeal to practising economists and students of the discipline alike, as well as to anybody interested in economics and its position in the scientific and social scientific landscape.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Economics in relation to other disciplines Richard Arena, Sheila Dow and Matthias Klaes Part I. Economics in relation to the humanities and social sciences 1. The social science of economics Brian J. Loasby 2. Economics and literature Bruna Ingrao 3. Happiness: what Kahneman could have learnt from Pietro Verri Pier Luigi Porta Part II. Economics in relation to the life and natural sciences 4. Newtonian physics, experimental moral philosophy and the shaping of political economy Sergio Cremaschi 5. Evolutionary biology and economic behaviour: re-visiting Veblen's instinct of workmanship Mark Harrison 6. Medicine and economics in pre-classical economics Alain Clément and Ludovic Desmedt Part III. Economics and mathematics 7. Mathematics as the role model for neoclassical economics Nicola Giocoli 8. The role of econometric method in economic analysis: A reassessment of the Keynes-Tinbergen debate, 1938-43 Giovanna Garrone and Roberto Marchionatti IV. Economics and architecture 9. Economics and architecture Maurice Lagueux 10. Economic policies and urban development in Latin America Michele Alacevich and Andrea Costa V. Economics and geography 11. ‘Space’ in economic thought Giovanna Vertova 12. Economics, geography and colonialism in the writings of William Petty Hugh Goodacre Part VI. Economics and sociology 13. Economics and sociology: Gustav Schmoller and Werner Sombart on social differentiation Joachim Zweynert 14. Is Homo Oeconomicus a 'bad guy'? Isabelle This Saint-Jean
Richard Arena is Professor of Economics at the University of Nice-Sophia Antipolis, France. Sheila Dow is Professor of Economics at the University of Stirling, UK. Matthias Klaes is Professor of Commerce at Keele University, UK.
'This is an important and timely book. The contributors have provided a thought-provoking study of how economic thought and methodology has affected and been affected by the developments in other disciplines. Strongly recommended for anyone interested in history of thought and/or methodology.' Karl Petrick (University of the West Indies, Jamaica)