Retrospectives: The Origins of the Representative Agent
AbstractThis paper examines Alfred Marshall's invention of the representative firm. Marshall first used the representative firm in order to describe an industry supply curve for an industry with heterogeneous firms. Despite Marshall's limited use of the notion, the representative agent was extensively criticized as an ephemeral, useless construct that was unable to account for economic growth and that ignored important heterogeneities. The criticisms succeeded in banishing the representative agent from economics. These initial criticisms are also shown to apply to modern uses of the representative agent as well.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by American Economic Association in its journal Journal of Economic Perspectives.
Volume (Year): 10 (1996)
Issue (Month): 2 (Spring)
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- B13 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought through 1925 - - - Neoclassical through 1925 (Austrian, Marshallian, Walrasian, Stockholm School)
- D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
- B31 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought: Individuals - - - Individuals
- B21 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - - - Microeconomics
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Alan P. Kirman, 1992. "Whom or What Does the Representative Individual Represent?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 6(2), pages 117-136, Spring.
- Thomas Mayer, 1998.
"Indexed Bonds And Heterogeneous Agents,"
Contemporary Economic Policy,
Western Economic Association International, vol. 16(1), pages 77-84, 01.
- Marshall, Alfred, 1920. "Industry and Trade," History of Economic Thought Books, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, edition 3, number marshall1920.
- Mehra, Rajnish & Prescott, Edward C., 1985.
"The equity premium: A puzzle,"
Journal of Monetary Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 145-161, March.
- Young, Allyn A., 1928. "Increasing Returns and Economic Progress," History of Economic Thought Articles, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, vol. 38, pages 527-542.
- Frederik Herzberg, 2009.
"A representative individual from Arrovian aggregation of parametric individual utilities,"
411, Bielefeld University, Center for Mathematical Economics.
- Herzberg, Frederik, 2010. "A representative individual from Arrovian aggregation of parametric individual utilities," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(6), pages 1115-1124, November.
- Becker, Robert & Zilcha, Itzhak, 1997. "Stationary Ramsey Equilibria under Uncertainty," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 122-140, July.
- Regassa Senbeta S., 2011.
"How applicable are the New Keynesian DSGE models to a typical Low-Income Economy?,"
2011016, University of Antwerp, Faculty of Applied Economics.
- Senbeta, Sisay, 2011. "How applicable are the new keynesian DSGE models to a typical low-income economy?," MPRA Paper 30931, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Aoki, Masanao & Hawkins, Raymond, 2009.
"Macroeconomic Relaxation: Adjustment Processes of Hierarchical Economic Structures,"
Economics - The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal,
Kiel Institute for the World Economy, vol. 3(17), pages 1-21.
- Hawkins, Raymond & Aoki, Masanao, 2008. "Macroeconomic Relaxation: Adjustment Processes of Hierarchical Economic Structures," Economics Discussion Papers 2008-35, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
- Oscar Andrés Espinosa Acuña & Paola Andrea Vaca González, 2012. "La Educación Como Motor De Desarrollo Integral: La Importancia Del Capital Humano En El Crecimiento Económico Y Social De Largo Plazo," ECONOGRAFOS - ESCUELA DE ECONOMÃA 009936, UN - RCE - CID.
- Alberto Jaramillo & Hermilson Velásquez & Javier Santiago Ortiz & Natalia Serna, 2003. "Aspectos teóricos y empíricos de la relación empresas bancos," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO CIEF 003922, UNIVERSIDAD EAFIT.
- Aoki, Masanao & Hawkins, Raymond J., 2010. "Non-self-averaging and the statistical mechanics of endogenous macroeconomic fluctuations," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 1543-1546, November.
- Philipp Koellinger & Matthijs Loos & Patrick Groenen & A. Thurik & Fernando Rivadeneira & Frank Rooij & André Uitterlinden & Albert Hofman, 2010. "Genome-wide association studies in economics and entrepreneurship research: promises and limitations," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 35(1), pages 1-18, July.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Jane Voros) or (Michael P. Albert).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.