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  1. L. A. Boland (1971). An Institutional Theory of Economic Technology and Change. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 1 (2):253-258.
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  2. Dennis Chong (1995). Rational Choice Theory's Mysterious Rivals. Critical Review 9 (1-2):37-57.
    Although rational choice theory has enjoyed only modest predictive success, it provides a powerful explanatory mechanism for social processes involving strategic interaction among individuals and it stimulates interesting empirical inquiries. Rather than present competing theories to compare against rational choice, Don Green and Ian Shapiro have merely alluded to alternative explanatory variables such as culture, institutions, and social norms, without showing either how these factors can be incorporated into a more powerful theory, or how they are inconsistent with rational choice (...)
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  3. Paul Davidson (1989). The Economics of Ignorance or Ignorance of Economics? Critical Review 3 (3-4):467-487.
    THE ECONOMICS OF TIME AND IGNORANCE by Gerald P. O'Driscoll, Jr. and Mario J. Rizzo New York: Basil Blackwell, 1985. 261pp., $34.95 O'Driscoll and Rizzo, two leading exponents of the Austrian subjectivist school of economics, claim to provide an original and powerful challenge to mainstream neoclassical economics. They also argue that there is much common ground between the Austrian approach and the recent development of Post Keynesian analysis. In this essay, the validity of such claims is analyzed, and the shortcomings (...)
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  4. Huw Dixon (1999). New Keynesian Economics, Nominal Rigidities and Involuntary Unemployment. Journal of Economic Methodology 6 (2):221-238.
    This paper explores the main motivations behind new Keynesian macroeconomics in the last 15 years. It focuses on the two central issues of nominal rigidity and involuntary unemployment. It argues that the Walrasian paradigm is inherently incapable of making sense of these issues except in an ad hoc manner. Both of these issues require the adoption of a framework with price and wage making agents to be properly modelled. Even if the Walrasian approach might fit the facts in a superficial (...)
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  5. Jeffrey Friedman (1995). Economic Approaches to Politics. Critical Review 9 (1-2):1-24.
    The debate over Green and Shapiro's Pathologies of Rational Choice Theory sustains their contention that rational choice theory has not produced novel, empirically sustainable findings about politics?if one accepts their definition of empirically sustainable findings. Green and Shapiro show that rational choice research often resembles the empirically vacuous practices in which economists engage under the aegis of instrumentalism. Yet Green and Shapiro's insistence that theoretical constructs should produce accurate predictions may inadvertently lead to instrumentalism. Some of Green and Shapiro's critics (...)
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  6. Sidney Gendin (1994). Why Arrow's Impossibility Theorem is Invalid. Journal of Social Philosophy 25 (1):144-159.
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  7. Herbert Gintis (2011). The Future of Behavioral Game Theory. Mind and Society 10 (2):97-102.
    Behavioral economics has rejuvenated economic theory and deepened the bonds between economic theory and the other social sciences. Neoclassical economics does not depend on individual preferences being self-regarding. Moreover, in market contexts, laboratory experiments indicate that traditional theory works well. Behavioral economic findings thus enrich and expand neoclassical economics rather than undermining it. In particular, social norms are an emergent property of human sociality, and exist as macrosocial structures that are not reducible to the preferences of individuals. Behavioral economists are (...)
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  8. Nicola Giocoli (2003). Fixing the Point: The Contribution of Early Game Theory to the Tool-Box of Modern Economics. Journal of Economic Methodology 10 (1):1-39.
    The paper aims at reconstructing the sequence of works through which the fixed-point technique entered the tool-box of modern economics and at establishing a link between this sequence and the neoclassical approach to economic modeling. The focus is on the change in the demonstration techniques caused by the spread of the so-called formalist approach to mathematical economics; this change was embodied by the fixed-point technique. The main conclusions of the paper are that the formalist revolution marked a dramatic discontinuity in (...)
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  9. Nils Goldschmidt & Bernd Remmele (2005). Anthropology as the Basic Science of Economic Theory: Towards a Cultural Theory of Economics. Journal of Economic Methodology 12 (3):455-469.
    Economics and culture are in a complex, developing relation to each other. Yet, to introduce ?culture? into economic theory requires, first of all, an appropriate understanding of culture itself. The crucial point of this paper is that culture in its development and structure is only understandable if one considers it in connection with the autonomous structural development of the forms with which the subjects experience and construct their world. In recognition of the socio?cultural organization of human society, there is no (...)
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  10. Jean Hampton (1996). The Limits of Hobbesian Contractarianism, Jody Krauss, Cambridge University Press, 1993, 334 + Ix Pages. Economics and Philosophy 12 (01):125-.
  11. Jean Hampton (1987). Free-Rider Problems in the Production of Collective Goods. Economics and Philosophy 3 (02):245-.
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  12. John C. Harsanyi (2007). The Logical Structure of Philosophical Errors. Economics and Philosophy 23 (3):349-357.
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  13. D. M. Hausman (2011). Mistakes About Preferences in the Social Sciences. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 41 (1):3-25.
    Preferences are the central notion in mainstream economic theory, yet economists say little about what preferences are. This article argues that preferences in mainstream positive economics are comparative evaluations with respect to everything relevant to value or choice, and it argues against three mistaken views of preferences: (1) that they are matters of taste, concerning which rational assessment is inappropriate, (2) that preferences coincide with judgments of expected self-interested benefit, and (3) that preferences can be defined in terms of choices.
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  14. Daniel M. Hausman, Philosophy of Economics. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    This is a comprehensive anthology of works concerning the nature of economics as a science, including classic texts and essays exploring specific branches and schools of economics. Apart from the classics, most of the selections in the third edition are new, as are the introduction and bibliography. No other anthology spans the whole field and offers a comprehensive introduction to questions about economic methodology.
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  15. Amartya Sen (1996). Rationality, Joy and Freedom. Critical Review 10 (4):481-494.
    Abstract In The Joyless Economy, Tibor Scitovsky proposes a model of human behavior that differs substantially from that of standard economic theory. Scitovsky begins with a basic distinction between ?comfort? and ?stimulation.? While stimulation is ultimately more satisfying and creative, we frequently fall for the bewitching attractions of comfort, which leads to impoverished lives. Scitovsky's analysis has far?reaching implications not only for the idea of rationality, but for the concept of utility (by making it plural in nature) and, perhaps most (...)
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Public Choice Theory
  1. Jonathan Baron (1998). Utilitarianism as a Public Philosophy, Robert E. Goodin. Cambridge University Press, 1995, 352 + Xii Pages. Economics and Philosophy 14 (01):151-.
  2. William Boardman, Some Themes in David Schmidtz, the Limits of Government: An Essay on the Public Goods Argument (Westview Press: 1991).
    The Scylla and Charybdis of institutions of cooperative enterprises are the potential for free riders, on the one hand, and the fact that some people may not value certain public goods. If we go to the one side, we encourage people who do value the public goods but whom cannot be excluded from enjoying them, to refuse to pay their share of the costs of providing them; if we go to the other side and force everyone to pay for them, (...)
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  3. Thomas A. Boylan & Ruvin Gekker (eds.) (2009). Economics, Rational Choice and Normative Philosophy. Routledge.
    Following Amartya Sen’s insistence to expand the framework of rational choice theory by taking into account ‘non-utility information,’ economists, political scientists and philosophers have recently concentrated their efforts in analysing the issues related to rights, freedom, diversity intentions and equality. Thomas Boylan and Ruvin Gekker have gathered essays that reflect this trend. The particular themes addressed in this volume include: the measurement of diversity and freedom, formal analysis of individual rights and intentions, judgment aggregation under constraints and strategic manipulation in (...)
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  4. Geoffrey Brennan & Philip Pettit (1993). Hands Invisible and Intangible. Synthese 94 (2):191 - 225.
    The notion of a spontaneous social order, an order in human affairs which operates without the intervention of any directly ordering mind, has a natural fascination for social and political theorists. This paper provides a taxonomy under which there are two broadly contrasting sorts of spontaneous social order. One is the familiar invisible hand; the other is an arrangement that we describe as the intangible hand. The paper is designed to serve two main purposes. First, to provide a pure account (...)
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  5. Harry Brighouse (1994). Choosing Justice: An Experimental Approach to Ethical Theory, Frohlich Norman and Joe A. Oppenheimer. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1992, Xiv + 258 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 10 (01):127-.
  6. Yan Souza Carreirãdeo (forthcoming). Avaliação Do Governo E "Voto Econômico". Kriterion (48).
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  7. Ian Carter (1995). Interpersonal Comparisons of Freedom. Economics and Philosophy 11 (01):1-.
  8. Ian Carter & Matthew H. Kramer (2008). How Changes in One's Preferences Can Affect One's Freedom (and How They Cannot): A Reply to Dowding and Van Hees. Economics and Philosophy 24 (1):81-96.
  9. Nesta Devine (2005). Is Analytic Marxism Possible? A 'Socialist' Interpretation of Public Choice Theory. Philosophy of Management 5 (2):89-95.
    Much management literature depends on the philosophical writings of F A Hayek and James M Buchanan. As such it is recognisably not Marxist but is in fact antithetical to Marxism. But there is a small, significant body of literature which attempts to recruit the ideas of writers in the field of ‘Public Choice’ (pre-eminently Buchanan) to the service of updated Marxist thinking about management. In this paper I argue that this endeavour, although it illustrates the common origins of neoliberalism and (...)
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  10. Norman Frohlich (1990). Social Contract, Free Ride: A Study of the Public Goods Problem, Anthony De Jassay. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1989, Vi + 256 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 6 (02):327-.
  11. Peter Gärdenfors (2006). A Representation Theorem for Voting with Logical Consequences. Economics and Philosophy 22 (2):181-190.
    This paper concerns voting with logical consequences, which means that anybody voting for an alternative x should vote for the logical consequences of x as well. Similarly, the social choice set is also supposed to be closed under logical consequences. The central result of the paper is that, given a set of fairly natural conditions, the only social choice functions that satisfy social logical closure are oligarchic (where a subset of the voters are decisive for the social choice). The set (...)
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  12. Ruth W. Grant (2002). The Ethics of Incentives: Historical Origins and Contemporary Understandings. Economics and Philosophy 18 (1):111-139.
    Increasingly in the modern world, incentives are becoming the tool we reach for when we wish to bring about change. In government, in education, in health care, between and within institutions of all sorts, incentives are offered to steer people's choices in certain directions. But despite the increasing interest in ethics and economics, the ethics of the use of incentives has raised very little concern. From a certain point of view, this is not surprising. When incentives are viewed from the (...)
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  13. Donald C. Hubin (1994). The Moral Justification of Benefit/Cost Analysis. Economics and Philosophy 10 (02):169-.
    Some have attempted to justify benefit/ cost analysis by appealing to a moral theory that appears to directly ground the technique. This approach is unsuccessful because the moral theory in question is wildly implausible and, even if it were correct, it would probably not endorse the unrestricted use of benefit/ cost analysis. Nevertheless, there is reason to think that a carefully restricted use of benefit/ cost analysis will be justifiable from a wide variety of plausible moral perspectives. From this, it (...)
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  14. Gregory S. Kavka (1991). Is Individual Choice Less Problematic Than Collective Choice? Economics and Philosophy 7:143-165.
  15. William Milberg (1996). The Rhetoric of Policy Relevance in International Economics. Journal of Economic Methodology 3 (2):237-259.
    This paper addresses the link between the generation of economic knowledge and economic policy conclusions. Focusing on the case of research in international trade, It establishes a taxonomy of rhetorical practices used to make such a link. The flexibility observed in these practices contrasts markedly with the rigidity of the conventions of theoretical and empirical knowledge creation. A survey of articles on international trade from four major journals from 1988 to 1992 shows that most policy-relevant research is entirely theoretical, but (...)
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  16. Michael Moehler & Geoffrey Brennan (2010). Neoclassical Economics. In Mark Bevir (ed.), Encyclopedia of Political Theory. SAGE Publications.
    The term neoclassical economics delineates a distinct and relatively homogenous school of thought in economic theory that became prominent in the late nineteenth century and that now dominates mainstream economics. The term was originally introduced by Thorstein Veblen to describe developments in the discipline (of which Veblen did not entirely approve) associated with the work of such figures as William Jevons, Carl Menger, and Leon Walras. The ambition of these figures, the first neoclassicists, was to formalize and mathematize the subject (...)
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  17. Steven Pressman (2006). Clap Happy: Applause and the Voting Paradox. Journal of Economic Methodology 13 (2):241-256.
    The voting paradox has been a problem for both the public choice and rational choice schools. A recent attempt to deal with this paradox argues that voting is like applauding at a concert and is therefore expressive rather than rational behavior. This paper argues that such a move fails because: (1) there are many essential differences between voting and clapping; (2) philosophical problems arise from trying to divorce voting from rational behavior; and (3) there are a number of empirical problems (...)
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  18. S. Abu Turab Rizvi (2007). Introduction: Thomas Schelling's Distinctive Approach. Journal of Economic Methodology 14 (4):403-408.
    (2007). Introduction: Thomas Schelling's distinctive approach. Journal of Economic Methodology: Vol. 14, No. 4, pp. 403-408. doi: 10.1080/13501780701718607.
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Rational Expectations Theory
  1. Friedel Bolle & Jessica Kaehler (2006). Coleman's Hypothesis on Trusting Behaviour and a Remark on Meta‐Studies. Journal of Economic Methodology 13 (4):469-483.
    Coleman (1990) describes ?calculative trust?. He states that, in order to trust, the value of trust has to be larger than the value of mistrust. So if subjects have (not personally but on average) rational expectations about the trustworthiness of their transaction partners, we should expect the frequency of trust to increase with the average net profitability of trust. In a meta?study of trust experiments, Coleman's Hypothesis could not be confirmed while, in our own experiment with a wider parameter range, (...)
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  2. Giacomo Bonanno, Martin van Hees, Christian List & Bertil Tungodden (2009). Introduction to the Special Issue of Economics and Philosophy on Ambiguity Aversion. Economics and Philosophy 25 (3):247-248.
    The paradigm for modelling decision-making under uncertainty has undoubtedly been the theory of Expected Utility, which was first developed by von Neumann and Morgenstern (1944) and later extended by Savage (1954) to the case of subjective uncertainty. The inadequacy of the theory of Subjective Expected Utility (SEU) as a descriptive theory was soon pointed out in experiments, most famously by Allais (1953) and Ellsberg (1961). The observed departures from SEU noticed by Allais and Ellsberg became known as “paradoxes”. The Ellsberg (...)
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  3. Marcel Boumans (1999). Representation and Stability in Testing and Measuring Rational Expectations. Journal of Economic Methodology 6 (3):381-402.
    There are at least two elements of theory completion necessary for measurement: (1) a measurement formula and (2) standardization of that representation. Standardization is based on the search for stability. The more stable the correlation which the measurement formula represents is, the less influence other circumstances have. Then, the interconnection between testing, mathematical representation and standardization is of a hierarchical order. By testing a model one tries to find out to what extent the model covers the data of the phenomenon, (...)
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  4. Donald W. Bruckner (2004). Prudence and Justice. Economics and Philosophy 20 (1):35-63.
    Whereas principles of justice adjudicate interpersonal conflicts, principles of prudence adjudicate intrapersonal conflicts – i.e., conflicts between the preferences an individual has now and the preferences he will have later. On a contractarian approach, principles of justice can be theoretically grounded in a hypothetical agreement in an appropriately specified pre-moral situation in which those persons with conflicting claims have representatives pushing for their claims. Similarly, I claim, principles of prudence can be grounded in a hypothetical agreement in an appropriately specified (...)
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  5. Michel de Vroey (2003). Perfect Informationà laWalras Versus Perfect Informationà laMarshall. Journal of Economic Methodology 10 (4):465-492.
    In this paper I ponder upon the meaning of the perfect information assumption, and argue that a distinction should be drawn between the Walrasian and Marshallian conceptions of perfect information. I show that the Marshallian conception is more demanding than the Walrasian, due to the absence of the auctioneer figure. Next, I examine a few modern imperfect information models (Friedman's expectations?augmented Phillips Curve model, Lucas' neutrality of money model, Shapiro and Stiglitz' efficiency wage model) in order to assess whether the (...)
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  6. Robert E. Goodin (2002). The Paradox of Persisting Opposition. Politics, Philosophy and Economics 1 (1):109-146.
    If voters accord evidentiary value to one another's reports, revising their own views in the light of them as Bayesian rationality requires, then even relatively small electoral majorities ought to prove rationally compelling and opposition ought rationally to vanish. For democratic theory, that is a jarring result. While there are no resources for avoiding that result within the Bayesian model itself, there are various aspects of the political process lying outside that model which do serve to underwrite the rationality (...)
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  7. Frédéric Laville (2000). Should We Abandon Optimization Theory? The Need for Bounded Rationality. Journal of Economic Methodology 7 (3):395-426.
    This paper makes explicit the rhetoric of optimization. Various arguments are examined, in order to determine whether we should retain optimization theory or assume bounded rationality. Empirical evidence confounds optimization theory; in the face of experimental studies, an empirical dilemma emerges, according to which we should discard either the theory of expected utility or the criterion of empirical refutation. Methodological criticisms attack optimization theory's epistemological status; together, they give rise to a methodological trilemma, according to which optimization theory is indeterminate, (...)
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  8. Silvia Lerner (2014). A Non-Monotonic Intensional Framework for Framing Effects. Journal of Economic Methodology 21 (1):37-53.
    Expected Utility Theory (EUT) has anomalies when interpreted descriptively and tested empirically. Experiments show that the way in which options are formulated is, in most cases, relevant for decision-making. This kind of anomaly is directly related, however, not with a proper axiom of EUT but rather with the logical principle of extensionality and its decision theoretic version: the principle of invariance. This paper focuses on the phenomenon of framing effects (FE) and the associated failures of invariance. FE arise when different (...)
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  9. Miroslav Misina (2008). Rationality of Beliefs and Model Consistency. Economics and Philosophy 24 (1):65-79.
    The assumption of rational expectations (RE) plays two roles in economic models: it imposes restrictions on behaviour of agents, and it ensures model consistency. Dissatisfaction with RE on behavioural grounds has, in a variety of models, led to its replacement by more behaviourally plausible postulates. However, replacing RE by ad hoc behavioural postulates may result in internally inconsistent models. This work introduces a conceptual framework within which the nature of the issue can be described, and points to potential problems that (...)
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  10. Stephen Morris (1995). The Common Prior Assumption in Economic Theory. Economics and Philosophy 11 (02):227-.
    Why is (it that) common priors are implicit or explicit in the vast majority of the differential information literature in economics and game theory? Why has the economic community been unwilling, in practice, to accept and actually use the idea of truly personal probabilities in much the same way that it did accept the idea of personal utility functions? After all, in (Savage's expected utility theory), both the utilities and probabilities are derived separately for each decision maker. Why were the (...)
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  11. Klaus Nehring (2009). Coping Rationally with Ambiguity: Robustness Versus Ambiguity-Aversion. Economics and Philosophy 25 (3):303-334.
    Al-Najjar and Weinstein (2009) argue that the extant literature on ambiguity aversion is not successful in accounting for Ellsberg choices as rational responses to ambiguity. We concur, and propose that rational choice under ambiguity aims at robustness rather than avoidance of ambiguity. A central argument explains why robust choice is intrinsically context-dependent and legitimately violates standard choice consistency conditions. If choice consistency is forced, however, ambiguity-aversion emerges as a semi-rational response to ambiguity.
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  12. Skog Ole-Jérgen (2001). Theorizing About Patience Formation±the Necessity of Conceptual Distinctions. Economics and Philosophy 17:207-219.
    The concept of patience describes a person's ability to make prolonged efforts towards future goals, and his or her ability to consider long-term future consequences. Clearly, patience is a capacity that comes by degrees. On the following pages, a person will be said to be patient to the extent that his actions are motivated by future consequences. Hence, a person is not patient if he has the ability to see long-term consequences, while being unable to take these consequences into consideration (...)
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  13. Martin Peterson (2010). Theory of Decision Under Uncertainty , Itzak Gilboa. Cambridge University Press, 2009. XIV + 215 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 26 (2):254-258.
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  14. Piers Rawling (1997). Expected Utility, Ordering, and Context Freedom. Economics and Philosophy 13 (01):79-.
  15. Jack Vromen (2010). On the Surprising Finding That Expected Utility is Literally Computed in the Brain. Journal of Economic Methodology 17 (1):17-36.
    Advocates of neuroeconomics sometimes argue that one of the most surprising findings in neuroeconomic studies is that expected utilities are literally computed in the brain. This claim is scrutinized closely in the paper. Not surprisingly, the tenability of the claim is shown to depend critically on what is meant by ?literal computation? and ?surprising?. It is argued that the findings do not show that expected utilities are literally computed, if by ?literal computation? we mean a particular kind of mental activity (...)
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Social Welfare Theory
  1. Judith Buber Agassi (1991). The Rise of the Ideas of the Welfare State. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 21 (4):444-457.
    It is customarily assumed that welfare-state thinking can only appear as a product of the sharpening conflict between revolutionary socialists and the defenders of the status quo; the case of Tom Paine proves otherwise. Although he defended private enterprise (to the exclusion of large landed property), he developed a forgotten early version of a comprehensive system of public welfare in the second part of his The Rights of Man and in his Agrarian Justice, where he argued that the new revolutionary (...)
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  2. J. Alcalde, M. C. Marco-Gil & J. A. Silva, The Minimal Overlap Rule: Restrictions on Mergers for Creditors' Consensus.
    As it is known, there is no rule satisfying Additivity in the complete domain of bankruptcy problems. This paper proposes a notion of partial Additivity in this context, to be called µ-additivity. We find that µ-additivity, together with two quite compelling axioms, anonymity and continuity, identify the Minimal Overlap rule, introduced by Neill (1982).
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