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Concensus, Dissensus and Economic Ideas: The Rise and Fall of Keynesianism During the Economic Crisis

  • Farrell, Henry
  • Quiggin, John

We provide a very different way to think about how consensus may arise. We deliberately skimp on the micro-processes of persuasion usually emphasized in constructivist accounts, instead highlighting the structural aspects of the cross-national networks through which experts communicate with each other. Specifically, we treat the spread of ideas within the relevant community of experts as a process of contagion, similar in many respects to the spread of an infectious disease. We also examine how such processes may lead to expert dissensus as well as consensus, and how this affects the power of ideas. If ideational consensus plays a key role in underpinning global financial orders, then we need to understand how such consensuses are generated, maintained and challenged. If we wish to understand the current politics of non-consensus, we need to move beyond the existing literature to evaluate the consequences of dissensus for economic order. We provide an account that does both, and, more speculatively, draws general conclusions about the consequences of ideas for international economic orders.

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File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/151527
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Paper provided by University of Queensland, School of Economics in its series Risk and Sustainable Management Group Working Papers with number 151527.

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Date of creation: 09 Dec 2011
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Handle: RePEc:ags:uqsers:151527
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  1. N. Gregory Mankiw, 2006. "The Macroeconomist as Scientist and Engineer," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2121, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  2. Alberto F. Alesina & Silvia Ardagna, 2009. "Large Changes in Fiscal Policy: Taxes Versus Spending," NBER Working Papers 15438, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Ana Rute Cardoso & Paulo Guimar�es & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2010. "Trends in Economic Research: An International Perspective," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(4), pages 479-494, November.
  4. Carpenter, R. Charli, 2007. "Studying Issue (Non)-Adoption in Transnational Advocacy Networks," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 61(03), pages 643-667, July.
  5. Ruggie, John Gerard, 1982. "International regimes, transactions, and change: embedded liberalism in the postwar economic order," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 36(02), pages 379-415, March.
  6. Olivier Blanchard & Giovanni Dell'Ariccia & Paolo Mauro, 2010. "Rethinking Macroeconomic Policy," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 42(s1), pages 199-215, 09.
  7. Alan S. Blinder, 2004. "The Case Against the Case Against Discretionary Fiscal Policy," Working Papers 102, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Center for Economic Policy Studies..
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