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On rhetoric and being realistic about the monetary policy of developing countries


  • Jan Toporowski


This paper focuses on economists' aspirations to apprehend the reality of the economy that they seek to study, while economic processes are largely beyond the boundaries of perception. It is recognized that engaging in dialogue with each other and with policymakers forces economists into compromise with conventional wisdom by rhetoric. We explore how questions beyond the boundaries of realist perception are commonly tackled in contemporary monetary analysis by axiomatic reasoning and mimesis (the proliferation of models that can mimic the evolution of particular variables). This provides a shared numerical discourse, but cannot overcome the problem of realistic understanding. It is argued that this is a particular difficulty in the case of monetary policy in emerging and developing countries, where policy dependence on external financial support places a premium on the rhetorical conventions of global financial centres. JEL Classifications: B41, E42, O16

Suggested Citation

  • Jan Toporowski, 2007. "On rhetoric and being realistic about the monetary policy of developing countries," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(1), pages 47-55.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jecmet:v:14:y:2007:i:1:p:47-55 DOI: 10.1080/13501780601170057

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. John Hudson, 1996. "Trends in Multi-authored Papers in Economics," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(3), pages 153-158, Summer.
    2. Scott, Loren C & Mitias, Peter M, 1996. "Trends in Rankings of Economics Departments in the U.S.: An Update," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 34(2), pages 378-400, April.
    3. Laband, David N, 1986. "Article Popularity," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 24(1), pages 173-180, January.
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    5. Blank, Rebecca M, 1991. "The Effects of Double-Blind versus Single-Blind Reviewing: Experimental Evidence from The American Economic Review," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1041-1067, December.
    6. Aloysius Siow, 1991. "Are First Impressions Important in Academia?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(2), pages 236-255.
    7. Laband, David N & Piette, Michael J, 1994. "Favoritism versus Search for Good Papers: Empirical Evidence Regarding the Behavior of Journal Editors," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(1), pages 194-203, February.
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    More about this item


    Rhetoric; realism; monetary policy; development;

    JEL classification:

    • B41 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Economic Methodology
    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System
    • O16 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Financial Markets; Saving and Capital Investment; Corporate Finance and Governance


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