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Veblen, Myrdal, and the Convergence Hypothesis: Toward an Institutionalist Critique

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  • John Hall
  • Udo Ludwig

Abstract

An Institutionalist critique that draws from selected contributions of Veblen and Myrdal initiates a convergence debate. Challenged is a Neoclassical interpretation of economic processes expected to lead toward a catching up with respect to per capita output of Germany's poorer eastern region with the richer western region. Economic method is considered, and the Institutionalist School of Thought rooted in contributions of Veblen as well as Myrdal is touted for offering higher levels of explanatory power than the Neoclassical School. We challenge the usefulness of laws in Economic Science, and especially their applicability to the empirical economy. Instead of automatic forces driving a >i>meliorative>/i> trend, we seek to establish that human agency and policy play determining roles in affecting economic and societal outcomes in Germany's eastern region.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by M.E. Sharpe, Inc. in its journal Journal of Economic Issues.

Volume (Year): 44 (2010)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 943-962

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Handle: RePEc:mes:jeciss:v:44:y:2010:i:4:p:943-962

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Web page: http://www.mesharpe.com/mall/results1.asp?acr=jei

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Keywords: convergence debate; Eastern Germany; Gunnar Myrdal; institutional economics; Thorstein Veblen;

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