IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Where There Is No Vision, Economists Will Perish


  • Charles M. A. Clark


Mainstream economists are currently under fire because they did not foresee the financial meltdown of 2007. This article suggests that many of the shortcomings of neoclassical economics come from its overly narrow understanding of the human person. Economists could turn to the higher discipline of theology, specifically the Catholic social thought tradition, for a richer and more realistic understanding of the nature of the human person. With a more secure foundation, economists will perhaps be able to develop more relevant theories and policies.

Suggested Citation

  • Charles M. A. Clark, 2014. "Where There Is No Vision, Economists Will Perish," Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, vol. 11(2), pages 136-143, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:ejw:journl:v:11:y:2014:i:2:p:136-143

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Allais, Maurice, 1997. "An Outline of My Main Contributions to Economic Science," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(6), pages 3-12, December.
    2. Heilbroner,Robert L. & Milberg,William S., 1996. "The Crisis of Vision in Modern Economic Thought," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521497145, November.
    3. Charles M.A. Clark, 1992. "Economic Theory And Natural Philosophy," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 89, December.
    4. Robert L. Heilbroner, 1979. "Modern Economics As a Chapter in the History of Economic Thought," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, vol. 11(2), pages 192-198, Summer.
    5. Heilbroner,Robert L. & Milberg,William S., 1996. "The Crisis of Vision in Modern Economic Thought," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521497749, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Eicher, Carl K. & Rukuni, Mandivamba, 1996. "Reflections On Agrarian Reform And Capacity Building In South Africa," Staff Paper Series 11703, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    2. Robert A. Blecker & Mark Setterfield, 2020. "On multi-sector and multi-technique models, production functions and Goodwin cycles: a reply to Libman," European Journal of Economics and Economic Policies: Intervention, Edward Elgar Publishing, vol. 17(3), pages 295-306, November.
    3. Matthias P. Hühn, 2019. "Adam Smith’s Philosophy of Science: Economics as Moral Imagination," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 155(1), pages 1-15, March.
    4. Móczár, József, 2017. "Ergodic Versus Uncertain Financial Processes – Part II: Neoclassical and Institutional Economics," Public Finance Quarterly, Corvinus University of Budapest, vol. 62(4), pages 478-501.
    5. H. R. N. van Erp & R. O. Linger & P. H. A. J. M. van Gelder, 2014. "Fact Sheet Research on Bayesian Decision Theory," Papers 1409.8269,, revised Jan 2015.
    6. José Luís Cardoso, 2015. "Liberalism and enlightened political economy," The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(6), pages 934-948, December.
    7. Clive Beed & Cara Beed, 1996. "Polarities between Naturalism and Non-Naturalism in Contemporary Economics: An Overview," Journal of Economic Issues, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 30(4), pages 1077-1104, December.
    8. Iain White, 2020. "Rigour and rigour mortis? Planning, calculative rationality, and forces of stability and change," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 57(14), pages 2885-2900, November.
    9. Ramzi Klabi, 2019. "Maurice Allais on the quantity theory of money: the ontological restatement," Post-Print hal-02417403, HAL.
    10. Charles M. A. Clark & Aleksandr V. Gevorkyan, 2020. "Artificial Intelligence and Human Flourishing," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 79(4), pages 1307-1344, September.
    11. Robison, Lindon J. & Shupp, Robert S. & Myers, Robert J., 2010. "Expected utility paradoxes," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 187-193, April.
    12. Jean-Sébastien Lenfant, 2005. "Individual psychology and the stability of a general competitive equilibrium in Maurice Allais' Traité d'économie pure [Psychologie individuelle et stabilité d'un équilibre général concurrentiel da," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-01712704, HAL.
    13. Charles M. A. Clark, 2021. "Development Policy and the Poor, Part 2: Preferential Option for the Poor," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 80(4), pages 1131-1154, September.
    14. Matthias P. Hühn & Claus Dierksmeier, 2016. "Will the Real A. Smith Please Stand Up!," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 136(1), pages 119-132, June.
    15. Mooreland, Jay, II, 2011. "The Irrational Investor’s Risk Profile," Master's Theses and Plan B Papers 107787, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics.
    16. Ötsch, Walter, 2020. "Imagination und Bildlichkeit in der Geschichte der Wirtschaftstheorie: Von Adam Smith bis zur frühen Neoklassik," Working Paper Series 63, Cusanus Hochschule für Gesellschaftsgestaltung, Institut für Ökonomie.
    17. Ötsch, Walter Otto, 2015. "Ökonomie und Moral: Eine kurze Theoriegeschichte," Working Paper Series Ök-07, Cusanus Hochschule für Gesellschaftsgestaltung, Institut für Ökonomie.
    18. Ötsch, Walter, 2018. "Bilder in der Geschichte der Ökonomie: Das Beispiel der Metapher von der Wirtschaft als Maschine," Working Paper Series Ök-42, Cusanus Hochschule für Gesellschaftsgestaltung, Institut für Ökonomie.
    19. Lall Ramrattan & Michael Szenberg, 2011. "Maurice Allais: A Review of His Major Works, A Memoriam, 1911–2010," The American Economist, Sage Publications, vol. 56(1), pages 104-122, May.
    20. Piet-Hein van Eeghen, 1996. "Towards a methodology of tendencies," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 3(2), pages 261-284.

    More about this item


    Human nature; neoclassical economic theory; Catholic social thought;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • A12 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Other Disciplines
    • A13 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Social Values
    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship
    • Z12 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Religion
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ejw:journl:v:11:y:2014:i:2:p:136-143. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Jason Briggeman (email available below). General contact details of provider: .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.