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Principles of the Austrian Tradition in the Policy Cycle

Rosamaria Bitetti

A chapter in Austrian Economics: The Next Generation, 2018, vol. 23, pp 145-159 from Emerald Publishing Ltd

Abstract: Abstract This research explores the relevance of the Austrian tradition within the field of public policy studies. Policy studies is a research field about what governments can do. Austrian economics, conversely, mostly highlights the shortfalls of government intervention: as such overlapping seems limited. However, broadly speaking Austrian principles have indirectly influenced two aspects of policy studies: the conceptualization of the policy cycle as an imperfect process driven by actual individuals with limited knowledge and bounded rationality, and the creation of a regulatory framework that forces policy makers to reflect upon unintended consequences, by using evidence and data. This regulatory framework, assessed in this chapter by reading several regulatory guidelines through Austrian lenses, provides a new window of opportunities for Austrian economics to be relevant in the policy process. Austrian economist can be taking part in the regulatory process and also help select regulatory tools and institutional infrastructures that minimize the unintended consequences of government intervention, while contributing to the definition of social problems that enter the policy agenda from an individualistic perspective.

Keywords: Austrian economics; methodological individualism; public policy; regulation; impact assessment guidelines; problem definition (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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