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Hayek’s Political Insights: Emergent Orders and Laid On Laws

Michael Munger ()

A chapter in Revisiting Hayek’s Political Economy, 2016, vol. 21, pp 145-161 from Emerald Publishing Ltd

Abstract: Abstract F. A. Hayek was a throwback to the time when economics was a part of philosophy, and the questions and approaches used by scholars were ecumenical. This paper asks a specific question: Was Hayek “really” a political scientist? Political science is the older discipline, and was traditionally concerned with society and norms as well as laws. The comparative analysis is mostly qualitative, though a quantitative comparison between citation patterns for Hayek and another “political” economist and Nobelist, James Buchanan, is also presented. My conclusion is that, to the extent that Hayek considered institutions that are collective and non-market (i.e., do not work primarily through the price mechanism), Hayek might indeed be considered to have made substantial contributions in political science. The fact that political scientists seem to disagree may say more about the discipline than the man.

Keywords: Austrian economics; Hayek; political science; social theory; institutions (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2016
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