09-03 "Economic Writing on the Pressing Problems of the Day: The Roles of Moral Intuition and Methodological Confusion"
Economists are often called on to help address pressing problems of the day, yet many economists are uncomfortable about disclosing the values that they bring to this work. This essay explores how an inadequate understanding of the role of methodology, as related to ethics and human emotions of concern, underlies this reluctance and compromises the quality of economic advice. The tension between caring about the problems, on the one hand, and writing within the existing culture of the discipline, on the other, are illustrated with examples from U.S. policymaking, behavioral economics, and the economics of climate change and global poverty. Potential steps towards a more responsible, "strongly objective," and policy-useful economics are discussed.
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- Dasgupta, Partha, 2007. "Reply To Putnam And Walsh," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 23(03), pages 365-372, November.
- Julie Nelson, 2007. "Economics for Humans:," Challenge, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(4), pages 17-25.
- Hilary Putnam & Vivian Walsh, 2007. "Facts, Theories, Values and Destitution in the Works of Sir Partha Dasgupta," Review of Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 181-202.
- William D. Nordhaus, 2006. "The "Stern Review" on the Economics of Climate Change," NBER Working Papers 12741, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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