What Do Economists Contribute?

What Do Economists Contribute?

by Daniel B. Klein, Daniel B. Klein
     
 
Economists direct their research mainly to the technical frontiers of the discipline. But the actual decisions of political economy are made, not by experts, but by ordinary public officials and voters—the "Everyman." However, the task of educating the Everyman is neglected\, sometimes even denigrated, by academic economists.

Daniel Klein has here gathered essays

Overview

Economists direct their research mainly to the technical frontiers of the discipline. But the actual decisions of political economy are made, not by experts, but by ordinary public officials and voters—the "Everyman." However, the task of educating the Everyman is neglected\, sometimes even denigrated, by academic economists.

Daniel Klein has here gathered essays of 9 great economists of this century—Friedrich Hayek, Ronald Coase, Thomas Schelling, Gordon Tullock, Israel Kirzner, Frank Graham, William Hutt, Clarence Philbrook, and D. McCloskey—addressing the existential issue for economists: "How do we contribute to human betterment?"

The authors express their esteem for economic research firmly rooted in public issues and that contributes to public discourse. Some suggest that the academic focus on technical refinement not only diverts economists from efforts at public edification, but might even mislead economists in their own understanding of economic affairs.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Do economists have much influence on government policy, particularly over, say, five or ten years? Probably not. Is that because they don't try hard enough or is it because politicians care more about the next election than about the opinion of economists? In this splendid collection of papers, some published as long ago as the 1930s, nine great economists consider these questions. The editor's illuminating introduction sorts out the area of agreement and disagreement between them."

-Mark Blaug,University of Exeter

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780814747230
Publisher:
New York University Press
Publication date:
01/01/1999
Series:
Cato Institute Book Series
Pages:
208
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.52(d)

What People are saying about this

Mark Blaug
Do economists have much influence on government policy, particularly over, say, five or ten years? Probably not. Is that because they don't try hard enough or is it because politicians care more about the next election than about the opinion of economists? In this splendid collection of papers, some published as long ago as the 1930s, nine great economists consider these questions. The editor's illuminating introduction sorts out the area of agreement and disagreement between them.
—Mark Blaug, University of Exeter
From the Publisher

"Do economists have much influence on government policy, particularly over, say, five or ten years? Probably not. Is that because they don't try hard enough or is it because politicians care more about the next election than about the opinion of economists? In this splendid collection of papers, some published as long ago as the 1930s, nine great economists consider these questions. The editor's illuminating introduction sorts out the area of agreement and disagreement between them."

-Mark Blaug,University of Exeter

Meet the Author

Daniel B. Klein is Associate Professor of Economics at Santa Clara University. He is co-author of Curb Rights: A Foundation for Free Enterprise in Urban Transit and editor of Reputation: Studies in the Voluntary Elicitation of Good Conduct and What Do Economists Contribute?, available from NYU Press.

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