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Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here?

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Author Info

  • Rowena Pecchenino

    ()
    (Department of Economics Finance and Accounting, National University of Ireland, Maynooth)

Abstract

Hope plays an important role in all individuals’ lives both today and in the future. While hope and hopelessness are important concepts and the subjects of much theorizing in psychology, theology, philosophy, political science, nursing, as well as in literature and the arts, it is absent from economics. This silence on hope is notable since hope is fundamentally at the centre of choice, especially intertemporal choice, which is at the centre of economic analysis. To place hope at the centre of intertemporal choice, it is important to clearly define what hope is and what it is not. What hope is not is constant. Hope is not optimism; hope is not unfounded dreams divorced from reality; hope is not irrational. I distil what hope is from its characterization in a number of different disciplines. A comparison of characterizations identifies a number of commonalities and common definitions. Using the derived set of definitions, I incorporate hope into economic analysis, consider what implications hope has for the modelling of choice and for economic behaviour, and discuss whether hope is implicitly imbedded in or has been abandoned, to our eternal cost, by economics.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, Finance and Accounting, National University of Ireland - Maynooth in its series Economics, Finance and Accounting Department Working Paper Series with number n217-11.pdf.

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Length: 20 pages
Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:may:mayecw:n217-11.pdf

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Postal: Maynooth, Co. Kildare
Phone: 353-1-7083728
Fax: 353-1-7083934
Web page: http://economics.nuim.ie
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Related research

Keywords: Hope; rational choice; goal orientation; expectations; faith;

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As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. The economics of hope
    by Kevin Denny in Geary Behaviour Centre on 2011-03-20 11:03:00

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