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Friday, July 03, 2015

'Behavioral Economics is Rational After All'

Roger Farmer:

Behavioral Economics is Rational After All: There are some deep and interesting issues involved in the debate over behavioral economics. ...
My point here, is that neoclassical economics can absorb the criticisms of the behaviourists without a major shift in its underlying assumptions. The 'anomalies' pointed out by psychologists are completely consistent with maximizing behaviour, as long as we do not impose any assumptions on the form of the utility function defined over goods that are dated and indexed by state of nature.
There is a deeper, more fundamental critique. If we assert that the form of the utility function is influenced by 'persuasion', then we lose the intellectual foundation for much of welfare economics. That is a much more interesting project that requires us to rethink what we mean by individualism. ...

    Posted by on Friday, July 3, 2015 at 11:59 AM in Economics, Methodology | Permalink  Comments (35)


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