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Was Hayek An Ace?

  • Nick Vriend

    (Queen Mary and Westfield College)

In order to address the question whether Hayek might have been an Agent-based Computational Economist (ACE) avant-la-lettre, we consider an ACE model concerning the phenomenon of information contagion. Alongside increasing returns, network externalities, and information cascades, information contagion has been presented in the literature as an explanation for particular patterns of macrobehavior that may seem at odds with the underlying micromotives. But whereas these other explanations have been shown to have a proper microfoundation, information contagion has remained a phenomenon that seemed to occur only when certain ad hoc rules of thumb for individual behavior are assumed. We show how information-contagious behavior can emerge in a coevolutionary process of interacting adaptive agents, how this is related to various Hayekian themes, and how ACE research in general is an application of Hayek's methodological insights.

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Paper provided by Society for Computational Economics in its series Computing in Economics and Finance 2000 with number 272.

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Date of creation: 05 Jul 2000
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:sce:scecf0:272
Contact details of provider: Postal: CEF 2000, Departament d'Economia i Empresa, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Ramon Trias Fargas, 25,27, 08005, Barcelona, Spain
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  1. Allison, G. & Fudenberg, D., 1992. "Rules of Thumb for Social Learning," Working papers 92-12, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
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