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Rationality and choices in economics: behavioral and evolutionary approaches

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  • Graziano, Mario
  • Schilirò, Daniele

Abstract

The paper critically discusses the issue of rationality and choices in economics in both the behavioural and evolutionary approaches. Our study aims, on the one hand, to highlight the scientific contributions of psychology in economics, since psychology, and with it the theoretical approach of the behavioral economics, has made more complex and problematic the analysis of economic choices, showing the limits of rationality. On the other hand, the work offers a reinterpretation of the theory of Alfred Marshall in a biologicalevolutionary perspective. The reinterpretation of Marshall's theory in a evolutionary perspective aims to show that, historically, economics has not been a discipline aligned in a homogenous way to a single and undifferentiated thought, locked into the idea of perfect rationality, but, on the opposite, is a discipline that has enriched itself and continually is enriching by contributions and significant contaminations with other research fields.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 35971.

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Date of creation: Jan 2012
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:35971

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Keywords: rationality; choices; behavioral economics; evolutionary theories; biology;

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  1. Richard M. Cyert & Herbert A. Simon & Donald B. Trow, 1956. "Observation of a Business Decision," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29, pages 237.
  2. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1986. "Rational Choice and the Framing of Decisions," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(4), pages S251-78, October.
  3. Thaler, Richard, 1981. "Some empirical evidence on dynamic inconsistency," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 201-207.
  4. Rabin, Matthew, 1997. "Psychology and Economics," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt8jd5z5j2, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  5. Simon, Herbert A, 1979. "Rational Decision Making in Business Organizations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(4), pages 493-513, September.
  6. Milton Friedman & L. J. Savage, 1948. "The Utility Analysis of Choices Involving Risk," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 56, pages 279.
  7. Laibson, David I., 1997. "Golden Eggs and Hyperbolic Discounting," Scholarly Articles 4481499, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  8. Castellani, Marco & Di Giovinazzo, Viviana & Novarese, Marco, 2010. "Procedural rationality and happiness," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 376-383, June.
  9. Daniel Kahneman & Richard H. Thaler, 2006. "Anomalies: Utility Maximization and Experienced Utility," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(1), pages 221-234, Winter.
  10. Schilirò, Daniele, 2011. "Decisioni e razionalità in economia
    [Decisions and rationality in economics]
    ," MPRA Paper 29477, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  11. Smith, Vernon L, 1982. "Microeconomic Systems as an Experimental Science," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 923-55, December.
  12. Shane Frederick & George Loewenstein & Ted O'Donoghue, 2002. "Time Discounting and Time Preference: A Critical Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(2), pages 351-401, June.
  13. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-91, March.
  14. Herbert Simon, 2000. "Bounded rationality in social science: Today and tomorrow," Mind and Society: Cognitive Studies in Economics and Social Sciences, Fondazione Rosselli, vol. 1(1), pages 25-39, March.
  15. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L & Thaler, Richard H, 1990. "Experimental Tests of the Endowment Effect and the Coase Theorem," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1325-48, December.
  16. Thaler, Richard, 1980. "Toward a positive theory of consumer choice," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 39-60, March.
  17. Alfred Marshall, 1991. "Analogies mécaniques et biologiques en économie (1898)," Revue Française d'Économie, Programme National Persée, vol. 6(1), pages 103-113.
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Cited by:
  1. Daniele SCHILIRÒ, 2013. "Bounded Rationality: Psychology, Economics And The Financial Crises," Theoretical and Practical Research in Economic Fields, ASERS Publishing, vol. 0(1), pages 97-108, July.
  2. Schilirò, Daniele, 2012. "Bounded rationality and perfect rationality: psychology into economics," MPRA Paper 41663, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Chatterjee, Sidharta, 2014. "Equilibrium Models of Macroeconomic Science: What to Look For in (DSGE) Models?," MPRA Paper 53893, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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