How economists think differently

Carmen Elena Dorobat (Coventry): A Brief History of International Trade Thought: From Pre-doctrinal Contributions to the 21st Century Heterodox International Economics. Nicholas J. Theocarakis (Athens): The History of the Political Economy of Public Debt. Ugo Pagano (Siena): The Crisis of Intellectual Monopoly Capitalism. What caused capitalism? Jeremy Adelman on assessing the roles of the West and the Rest. Whichever policies — macro or micro — turn out to work best for addressing today’s economic problems, one thing has become abundantly clear: optimism is out of fashion. Mario J. Rizzo (NYU): Abstract Morality for an Abstract Order. Everything you need to know about laissez-faire economics: David Sloan Wilson interviews Alan Kirman on the Institute for New Economic Thinking (and more). Thomas Piketty (Paris): Putting Distribution Back at the Center of Economics: Reflections on Capital in the Twenty-First Century. Thomas Piketty explains the meaning of economic models, and why we can’t rely on them.

Eric S. Schliesser (Ghent): The Separation of Economics from Virtue: A Historical-Conceptual Introduction. Noah Smith on how a little psychology does economics some good; and on how economics has a math problem. Anna Louie Sussman interviews Paul Romer on “mathiness” and the state of economics. Economists’ tribal thinking: Gillian Tett on how cultural anthropology can help explain why the downturn caught everyone by surprise. Can economists learn? Alan S. Blinder reviews What Have We Learned? Macroeconomic Policy after the Crisis, ed. George A. Akerlof, Olivier J. Blanchard, David Rom. Gary Gutting interviews Daniel Hausman on what economics can (and can’t) do. Paul Somna interviews Richard Thaler on how economists think differently from other humans. Joseph Heath on Levitt and Dubner’s Freakonomics: “The major difference is that social scientists who take morality seriously are called ‘sociologists’, whereas those who think it’s all a scam call themselves ‘economists’”.

A look at how leading economists now lean Left. Mark Thoma on the politics of economics and “Very Serious People”; and on restoring the public’s trust in economists. Beware of American econ professors: Yannis Palaiologos on how Krugman, Sachs and Stiglitz led the Greeks astray. Greece’s ex-finance minister Yanis Varoufakis takes questions from 9 leading academics on Grexit, the media, and economics.