Rationality and Efficiency: From Experimentation in (recent) Applied Microeconomics to Conceptual Issues
AbstractThis paper investigates how foundational and conceptual issues around economic rationality, which are usually discussed with respect to economic theory, materialize into recent applied microeconomics. We concentrate on three radically different subfield of microeconomics – the economics of discrimination, development economics and the economics of insurance – to look at how the recent rise of experimental methods and behavioral economics within mainstream economics have changed the conceptual relationship between economic rationality and economic efficiency, without changing the substance of these notions. The perspective of going from applied work of microeconomics in the field to conceptual and foundational issues on rationality reveals another issue that has not been much discussed in the reflexive literature yet: how warranted is the analytical distinction made in economics among interpersonal preferences, intertemporal preferences and preferences for risk and uncertainty? We show that this issue has straightforward consequences both on both economic theory and on the real world through the policy recommendations made by microeconomists.
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 InfoPaper provided by Groupe de REcherche en Droit, Économie, Gestion (GREDEG CNRS), University of Nice Sophia Antipolis in its series GREDEG Working Papers with number 2013-21.
Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2013
Date of revision:
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-07-15 (All new papers)
- NEP-EXP-2013-07-15 (Experimental Economics)
- NEP-HPE-2013-07-15 (History & Philosophy of Economics)
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.:
- John B. Davis, 2008. "The turn in recent economics and return of orthodoxy," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 32(3), pages 349-366, May.
- Esther Duflo & Michael Kremer & Jonathan Robinson, 2011.
"Nudging Farmers to Use Fertilizer: Theory and Experimental Evidence from Kenya,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 101(6), pages 2350-90, October.
- Esther Duflo & Michael Kremer & Jonathan Robinson, 2009. "Nudging Farmers to Use Fertilizer: Theory and Experimental Evidence from Kenya," NBER Working Papers 15131, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Kenneth J. Arrow, 1998. "What Has Economics to Say about Racial Discrimination?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(2), pages 91-100, Spring.
- Alan S. Blinder, 1973. "Wage Discrimination: Reduced Form and Structural Estimates," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 8(4), pages 436-455.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Patrice Bougette).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.