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The Scope and Promising Future of Social Economics

Jon Wisman ()

Review of Social Economy, 2003, vol. 61, issue 4, 425-445

Abstract: This essay explores the future potential for Social Economics. Since the beginning of modern economics, the mainstream has been steered by what might be called a material progress vision, whereby the generally unacknowledged pesumption is that economic growth will make the good life possible. Accordingly, such potential components of human welfare as more creative and fulfilling work, greater equality in the distribution of opportunity, wealth and income, and a greater degree of community can be more or less ignored for the present. Less guided by this vision, and unfettered by a pretense of value-neutrality, Social Economics does not view such components of welfare as subsidiary to economic growth. Instead, it is more focused upon the wholeness of social life, more concerned with the full requisites of the good and just society. By drawing upon recent work in psychology, sociology, and especially happiness research, Social Economics is found to offer a more promising orientation towards future economic concerns than does mainstream economics.

Keywords: Economic visions; happiness; work; community; justice (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2003
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DOI: 10.1080/0034676032000160886

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