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Philosophy of Economics

Edited by Anna Alexandrova (Cambridge University)
Assistant editor: Jack Wright (Cambridge University)
About this topic
Summary Philosophy of economics is a study of abstract issues that arise in connection to the discipline of economics. It has three core areas: foundations, methodology and ethics. Foundations of economics encompasses conceptual and metaphysical study such as nature of rationality and social ontology, seeking to clarify what we study when we study economics (preferences, individuals, institutions, societies etc?) and their properties and relations to each other. Methodology of economics is concerned with the nature of knowledge that can be attained about the economy and its sources.  The ethical side of philosophy of economics is a study of normative issues such as justice, efficiency, equality, welfare, paternalism, coercion and such, that arise at the intersection of political philosophy and welfare economics.
Key works Daniel Hausman is responsible for much contemporary philosophy of economics. Hausman 2008 is a comprehensive encyclopedia article. Hausman 2008 is an anthology of classic essays all the way back to J.S Mill and Marx. Hausman 2006 is a seminal study of normative assumptions in economics and their critical study. Hausman 1992 kickstarted and still informs many discussions in methodology of economics, for example Reiss 2009 which presents an updated agenda. Mäki 2001 is a collection on the ontology of economics.
Introductions There is now a textbook in philosophy of economics Reiss 2013. Other good introductions to philosophy of economics are just introductions to philosophy of social science. I favor Rosenberg 1995, Little 1991, and Elster 2007.
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Subcategories:See also:History/traditions: Philosophy of Economics
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  1. Pierluigi Barrotta (2009). The Pursuit of Unhappiness. The Elusive Psychology of Well-Being , Daniel M. Haybron. Oxford University Press, 2008, XV + 357 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 25 (3):378-384.
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  2. Yota Batsaki (2009). A Heap of Worthless Fragments : The Nineteenth-Century Literary Revaluation of the Classical Statue. In Jack Amariglio, Joseph W. Childers & Stephen Cullenberg (eds.), Sublime Economy: On the Intersection of Art and Economics. Routledge.
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  3. Eddie K. Baumann (1998). A Comparison of Economic Problem Solving in Experts and Naïve Thinkers. Journal of Social Studies Research 56 (2).
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  4. Ken Binmore (2009). Review Symposium. Journal of Economic Methodology 16 (2):207-219.
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  5. Ken Binmore (2005). What Price the Moral High Ground? Ethical Dilemmas in Competitive Environments, by Robert H. Frank. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2004, XII + 203 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 21 (2):309-311.
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  6. Ken Binmore (1991). Morality Within the Limits of Reason., Russell Hardin. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1988, Xx + 219 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 7 (01):112-119.
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  7. Jack Birner (1994). Stabilizing Dynamics; Constructing Economic Knowledge, E. Roy Weintraub. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991, X + 177 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 10 (02):349-.
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  8. L. A. Boland (1989). Book Reviews : Philosophy of Economics: A Critique of Demarcation. By Raphael Sassower. Lanham: University Press of America, 1985. Pp. Xx + 217. $11.75 (Paper. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences 19 (2):231-232.
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  9. L. A. Boland (1985). Book Reviews : Philosophy in Economics. Edited by JOSEPH C. PITT. Dordrecht, Boston and London: D. Reidel Publishing Co., 1981, Pp. 203 + Index. $14.95 (Paper. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences 15 (1):108-109.
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  10. L. A. Boland (1976). Book Reviews : An Economic Querist. By G. L. S. SHACKLE. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1973. Pp. 135. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences 6 (1):93-94.
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  11. Lawrence A. Boland (1983). On the Best Strategy for Doing Philosophy of Economics. [REVIEW] British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 34 (4):387-392.
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  12. Giacomo Bonanno (1994). Reply to Vilks. Economics and Philosophy 10 (01):115-.
    In his note Arnis Vilks (1994) raises two criticisms concerning my paper "The Logic of Rational Play in Extensive Games" (Bonanno, 1991). The author gives two examples: one to show that my logic "is inconsistent..
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  13. Luigi Bonatti (1984). Uncertainty: Studies in Philosophy, Economics, and Socio-Political Theory. B.R. Grüner.
    lNTRODUCTlON ln itself the world is neither governed by a principle of order, irremediably abandoned to disorder, structured with iron determinism, ...
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  14. William James Booth (1993). Households: On the Moral Architecture of the Economy. Cornell University Press.
    INTRODUCTION A story has been passed down to us from some two millennia ago of a conversation between a wealthy Athenian estate owner, ...
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  15. Kenneth E. Boulding (1989). The Economy of the Earth: Philosophy, Law, and the Environment, Mark Sagoff. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988, X + 271 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 5 (01):97-.
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  16. Bryan L. Boulier & Robert S. Goldfarb (1991). Pisces Economicus: The Fish as Economic Man. Economics and Philosophy 7 (01):83-86.
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  17. Samuel Bowles & Herbert Gintis (1993). A Political and Economic Case for the Democratic Enterprise. Economics and Philosophy 9 (01):75-.
  18. Michael Bradie (2000). Individualism and the Unity of Science, Harold Kincaid. Rowman & Littlefield, 1997, VII + 165 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 16 (1):147-174.
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  19. Richard Bradley (2000). Models and Reality in Economics, Steven Rappaport. Edward Elgar, 1998, VI + 233 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 16 (1):147-174.
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  20. Theodore A. Burczak (1994). Reply to Bruce Caldwell: Can Subjectivism Be Non-Hermeneutic? Economics and Philosophy 10 (02):315-.
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  21. Theodore A. Burczak (1994). The Postmodern Moments of F. A. Hayek'S Economics. Economics and Philosophy 10 (01):31-.
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  22. John Coates (2003). The Orders of Discourse: Philosophy, Social Science, and Politics, John Gunnell. Rowman and Littlefield, 1998, XV+252 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 19 (2):377-383.
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  23. A. J. Cohen (1990). Book Reviews : Neil de Marchi, Ed., The Popperian Legacy in Economics: Papers Presented at a Symposium in Amsterdam, December 1985. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1988. Pp. Xii, 280, $37.50 (Cloth. [REVIEW] Philosophy of the Social Sciences 20 (4):527-531.
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  24. Avi J. Cohen (1992). Seeing the Light Despite the Heat Post-Mirowski History of Economic Thought. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 22 (1):83-96.
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  25. David Collard (2008). Review of Handbook of the Economics of Giving, Altruism and Reciprocity. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 24 (2):265-271.
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  26. David Collard (2008). Handbook of the Economics of Giving, Altruism and Reciprocity. Volume 1, Foundations: Volume 2, Applications, Handbooks in Economics, Serge-Christophe Kolm and Jean Mercier Ythier (Eds). North Holland, 2006, Xxv, Xxii + 1588 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 24 (02):265-271.
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  27. Robert D. Cooter (1989). Rawls's Lexical Orderings Are Good Economics. Economics and Philosophy 5 (01):47-.
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  28. Allin Cottrell (1993). Keynes's Theory of Probability and Its Relevance to His Economics: Three Theses. Economics and Philosophy 9 (01):25-.
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  29. Tyler Cowen (2002). Invariances: The Structure of the Objective World. Robert Nozick, the Belknap Press, 2001, 416 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 18 (2):351-385.
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  30. Tyler Cowen (1993). The Scope and Limits of Preference Sovereignty. Economics and Philosophy 9 (02):253-.
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  31. Tyler Cowen (1992). Law as a Public Good: The Economics of Anarchy. Economics and Philosophy 8 (02):249-267.
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  32. Rod Cross (1993). On the Foundations of Hysteresis in Economic Systems. Economics and Philosophy 9 (01):53-.
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  33. Charles Cunneen (ed.) (1978). Explorations in Philosophy and Society. Grüner.
    PREFACE Charles Cunneen One of the most common cliches used by anti-socialists is that "socialism is great in theory, but no one has any freedom. ...
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  34. John Davis (1994). Maynard Keynes: An Economist's Biography, D. E. Moggridge. London and New York: Routledge, 1992, Xxxi + 941 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 10 (02):359-.
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  35. John B. Davis (1990). Cooter and Rappoport on the Normative. Economics and Philosophy 6 (01):139-.
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  36. Adolfo García de La Sienra (1989). The Reconstruction of Economic Theory, Philip Mirowski (Editor). Boston/Dordrecht/Lancaster: Kluwer-Nijhoff Publishing, 1986, X + 266 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 5 (02):255-.
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  37. Neil de Marchi (1986). Mill's Unrevised Philosophy of Economics: A Comment on Hausman. Philosophy of Science 53 (1):89-100.
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  38. Martin de Vlieghere (1994). A Reappraisal of Friedrich A. Hayek's Cultural Evolutionism. Economics and Philosophy 10 (02):285-.
  39. Michel de Vroey (1990). The Base Camp Paradox: A Reflection on the Place of Tâtonnement in General Equilibrium Theory. Economics and Philosophy 6 (02):235-.
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  40. James Devine & Gary Dymski (1992). Walrasian Marxism Once Again. Economics and Philosophy 8 (01):157-.
  41. John Dewey (1973). Lectures in China, 1919-1920. Honolulu,University Press of Hawaii.
  42. Laurence Dickey (1990). Hegel on Economics and Freedom, Edited by William Maker. Macon, GA: Mercer University Press, 1987, Viii + 236 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 6 (01):169-.
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  43. Thomas Donaldson (1991). Moral Mazes: The World of Corporate Managers, Robert Jackall. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988, Vii + 249 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 7 (02):295-.
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  44. Sheila C. Dow (1994). Kuhn's Paradigms and Neoclassical Economics: A Comment. Economics and Philosophy 10 (01):119-.
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  45. Sheila C. Dow (1991). On Keynes's Method, Anna Carabelli. London: Macmillan, 1988, Xi + 369 Pages.Keynes: Philosophy, Economics and Politics: The Philosophical Foundations of Keynes's Thought and Their Influence on His Economics and Politics, Roderick M. O'Donnell. London: Macmillan, 1989, Xi + 417 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 7 (01):132-139.
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  46. John Dupré (1994). The Methodology of Economics: Or How Economists Explain. 2nd Ed. Blaug Mark. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992, 286 + Xxviii Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 10 (01):138-.
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  47. Something Else (1991). Roy Weintraub's Studies in Appraisal. Economics and Philosophy 7:221-234.
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  48. David Fairris (1987). Democracy and Capitalism: Property, Community, and the Contradictions of Modern Social Thought, Samuel Bowles and Herbert Gintis, New York: Basic Books, 1986, X, 244 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 3 (01):145-.
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  49. Norman Fischer (1979). Economy and Self: Philosophy and Economics From the Mercantilists to Marx. Greenwood Press.
  50. Duncan K. Foley (1993). Reconstructing Marxism, by Wright Erik Olin, Levine Andrew, and Sober Elliot. London and New York: Verso, 1992, Xii + 202 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 9 (02):297-.
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