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Heterodox Economics and the Scientist's Role in Society

Marco Novarese () and Andrea Pozzali

American Journal of Economics and Sociology, 2010, vol. 69, issue 5, 1614-1635

Abstract: The present work starts from a simple question: Why should a state pay the salary for an academic researcher in economics? Generally speaking, research should be financed because it is useful for socioeconomic development; knowledge represents a productive input and it increases social welfare. How much does this argument hold for economic knowledge? Is economics helping in improving wealth and well‐being? This article will show how the incentive structure and the internal organization of the discipline prevent a positive answer to such questions. In fact these institutions do not necessarily stimulate researchers to understand economies, and economics completely neglects its role in shaping values because of its pretense of objectivity. Two solutions are proposed: more pluralism and a wider capacity to discuss with the whole society.

Date: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:bla:ajecsc:v:69:y:2010:i:5:p:1614-1635