dunnettreader + microfoundations   27

Nicola Gennaioli, Yueran Ma, and Andrei Shleifer - Expectations and Investment (2016) | Andrei Shleifer
Gennaioli, Nicola, Yueran Ma, and Andrei Shleifer. 2016. “Expectations and Investment.” NBER Macroeconomics Annual, Vol. 30 (2015): 379-442.
Abstract
Using micro data from Duke University quarterly survey of Chief Financial Officers, we show that corporate investment plans as well as actual investment are well explained by CFOs’ expectations of earnings growth. The information in expectations data is not subsumed by traditional variables, such as Tobin’s Q or discount rates. We also show that errors in CFO expectations of earnings growth are predictable from past earnings and other data, pointing to extrapolative structure of expectations and suggesting that expectations may not be rational. This evidence, like earlier findings in finance, points to the usefulness of data on actual expectations for understanding economic behavior. -- downloaded via iPhone to DBOX
cognition  rational_choice  microeconomics  behavioral_economics  article  cognitive_bias  investment  cognitive_science  downloaded  rational_expectations  corporate_finance  extrapolation  microfoundations  heuristics 
august 2016 by dunnettreader
Stefan Linder, Nicolai J. Foss - Agency Theory :: SSRN April 23, 2013
Stefan Linder, ESSEC Business School -- Nicolai J. Foss, Copenhagen Business School - Department of Strategic Management and Globalization *--* Agency theory studies the problems and solutions linked to delegation of tasks from principals to agents in the context of conflicting interests between the parties. Beginning from clear assumptions about rationality, contracting and informational conditions, the theory addresses problems of ex ante (“hidden characteristics”) as well as ex post information asymmetry (“hidden action”), and examines conditions under which various kinds of incentive instruments and monitoring arrangements can be deployed to minimize the welfare loss. Its clear predictions and broad applicability have allowed agency theory to enjoy considerable scientific impact on social science; however, it has also attracted considerable criticism. -- PDF File: 35 -- Keywords: adverse selection, agency costs, compensation, conflict of interest, contracting, corporate governance, delegation, hidden action, hidden characteristics, incentive intensity, information asymmetry, informativeness, monitoring, moral hazard, motivation, nexus of contracts, pay-for-performance -- downloaded pdf to Note
paper  SSRN  economic_theory  social_sciences-post-WWII  microeconomics  microfoundations  behavioral_economics  incentives  incentives-distortions  agency  agents  game_theory  rational_choice  rationality-economics  rationality-bounded  information-asymmetric  adverse_selection  delegation  moral_psychology  moral_hazard  contracts  principal-agent  downloaded 
january 2016 by dunnettreader
Objective Principles of Economics by Egmont Kakarot-Handtke :: SSRN - April 2014, update March 2015
University of Stuttgart - Institute of Economics and Law -- Economists have the habit of solving the wrong problem. They speculate circumstantially about the behavior of agents and do not come to grips with the behavior of the monetary economy. This is the consequence of the methodological imperative that all explanations must run in terms of the actions and reactions of individuals. The critical point is that no way leads from the understanding of the interaction of the individuals to the understanding of the working of the economy as a whole. The solution consists in moving from subjective-behavioral axioms to objective-structural axioms, i.e., from proto-scientific past to scientific future. -- Pages in PDF File: 19 -- Keywords: new framework of concepts, structure-centric, axiom set, methodology, complex adaptive system, profit -- for references downloaded pdf to Note
paper  SSRN  economic_theory  macroeconomics  microfoundations  methodological_individualism  behavioralism  complex_adaptive_systems  sociology_of_knowledge  sociology_of_science_&_technology  Kuhn  Laktos  scientific_method  bibliography  downloaded 
september 2015 by dunnettreader
David Glaser - Romer v. Lucas | Uneasy Money - August 13 2015
If the social functions of science were being efficiently discharged, this rather obvious replacement of problem solving by question begging would not have escaped effective challenge and opposition. But Lucas was able to provide cover for this substitution by persuading the profession to embrace his microfoundational methodology, while offering irresistible opportunities for professional advancement to younger economists who could master the new analytical techniques that Lucas and others were rapidly introducing, thereby neutralizing or coopting many of the natural opponents to what became modern macroeconomics. So while Romer considers the conquest of MIT by the rational-expectations revolution, despite the opposition of Robert Solow, to be evidence for the advance of economic science, I regard it as a sign of the social failure of science to discipline a regressive development driven by the elevation of technique over substance.
prices  sociology_of_knowledge  sociology_of_science  neoclassical_economics  Keynesianism  RBC  economic_models  macroeconomics  Kuhn  Romer  Laktos  economic_theory  Solow  New_Keynesian  sociology_of_science_&_technology  equilibrium  microfoundations  rational_expectations  mathematization  from instapaper
august 2015 by dunnettreader
Noah Smith - Economics Gets Real - Bloomberg View - June 2015
“It works in practice, but does it work in theory?” This joke is so commonly applied to economists that no one even knows who said it originally. The idea fits… Still too polyanna "both sides do it" and facts only have a modest liberal bias, but nice roundup of interesting papers and research programs on the empirical side that at least puts the kabosh on the Theory leads empirical which can be fitted or handwaved away which dominated the better part of the 1970s to the Great Depression -- and the Great Moderation is being reexaminedas not necessarily all so great
Instapaper  macroeconomics  microeconomics  microfoundations  behavioral_economics  economic_theory  links  from instapaper
june 2015 by dunnettreader
Janet L. Yellen, “Behavioral Economics and Economic Policy in the Past and Future” (September 2007 speech) - President and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank San Francisco
Panel on: “Behavioral Economics and Economic Policy in the Past and Future”
Federal Reserve Bank of Boston Conference: “Implications of Behavioral Economics for Economic Policy”, Boston, Massachusetts, September 28, 2007 -- linked to as good literature overview for behavioral_economics and its uses -- downloaded pdf to Note
speech  Yellen  Fed  central_banks  monetary_policy  fiscal_policy  economic_policy  behavioral_economics  economic_theory  economic_sociology  macroeconomics  microfoundations  incentives  incentives-distortions  lit_survey  bibliography  downloaded 
february 2015 by dunnettreader
Filip Palda, A school in decline: In Chicago, economists honour Gary Becker | Financial Post | November 4, 2014
Too bad. Becker was far superior to his promoters and acolytes - same with Coase. An embarrassingly feeble celebration of the Becker-Friedman-Stigler counter-revolution of outsider genius rebels against "Keynesian hegemony" beginning in the 1950s. The take-away seems to have been that markets are efficient when left alone and that government programs will inevitably be defeated by either regulatory capture or clever, rational, forward-looking agents that will game the system to produce an unintended (often perverse) outcome. Ironically, the only big example chosen to illustrate how Becker's forays into other social sciences flummoxed left-wing by overturning their cherished worldview looks increasingly flimsy - treating criminals as rational calculating economic agents rather than victims of assorted "pathologies." The microeconomist "knows" that the key to behavioral change is to just get the incentives and prices right through adjusting levels and types of punishment or type and amount of policing. Unfortunately for this example of economic imperialism, It's now clear that the enormous increase in crime rates over decades, followed by an equally enormous decline, shows that macro effects of some, yet to be agreed upon, social factors simply swamped any of the micro concerns of Becker's rational calculating agents. That's not to suggest microfoundations were irrelevant, but it increasingly appears that individual behavior was affected by factors of precisely the opposite sort from those that would be involved in rational utility calculations - the environmental poisoning of children's neurological systems, especially in the segregated urban-industrial ghettos into which the black population was forced to live, that reduced the capacity for self-control and rational calculation, and increased impulsive, indeed irrational, aggressive behavior, too often violent crime. And as the amount of poisoning has declined, so too has irrational, impulsive violence. But despite the accumulating evidence of macro factors, we can expect for decades to come that micro textbooks and right-wing economists will be reciting the "lessons" Becker's approach has "taught" for designing social policy. Just as they "know" voluntary unemployment doesn't exist - only that the government must be interfering with the prices and market incentives. Pthew!
20thC  intellectual_history  economic_theory  social_theory  behavioral_economics  microeconomics  microfoundations  incentives  prices  markets_in_everything  crime  criminal_justice  Chicago_School 
january 2015 by dunnettreader
Nitzan, Jonathan - From Olson to Veblen: The Stagflationary Rise of Distributional Coalitions (1992) | bnarchives
Paper read at the annual meeting of the History of Economics Society. Fairfax, Virginia. 1-2 June (1992). pp. 1-75. -- This essay deals with the relationship between stagflation and the process of restructuring. The literature dealing with the interaction of stagnation and inflation is invariably based on some explicit or implicit assumptions about economic structure, but there are very few writings which concentrate specifically on the link between the macroeconomic phenomenon of stagflation and the process of structural change. Of the few who dealt with this issue, we have chosen to focus mainly on two important contributors – Mancur Olson and Thorstein Veblen. The first based his theory on neoclassical principles, attempting to demonstrate their universality across time and place. The second was influenced by the historical school and concentrated specifically on the institutional features of modern capitalism. Despite the fundamental differences in their respective frameworks, both writers arrive at a similar conclusion, namely, that the phenomenon of stagflation is inherent in the dynamic evolution of collective economic action, particularly in the rise and consolidation of 'distributional coalitions.' -- Keywords: absentee ownership, intangible assets, big business, bonds, capital, accumulation, capitalism, collective action, collusion, corporation, credit, degree of monopoly, distributional coalitions, excess capacity, finance, immaterial wealth, income distribution, industry, inflation, institutions, interest, labour, liabilities, machine process, material wealth, neoclassical economics, normal rate of return, power, price, profit, productivity, property, sabotage, scarcity, stagnation, stagflation, stocks, tangible assets, technology, United States, value
paper  US_economy  economic_history  economic_theory  institutional_economics  Veblen  political_economy  Olson_Mancur  public_choice  collective_action  capital  capitalism  power  power-asymmetric  business-and-politics  interest_groups  interest_rates  interest_rate-natural  profit  corporate_ownership  managerialism  industry  production  productivity  productivity-labor_share  sabotage-by_business  distribution-income  distribution-wealth  wealth  asset_prices  financial_system  credit  competition  monopolies  oligopoly  prices  inflation  stagnation  property  technology  capital_markets  antitrust  neoclassical_economics  change-economic  change-social  levels_of_analyis  mesolevel  microfoundations  downloaded  EF-add 
october 2014 by dunnettreader
David Glaser - Franklin Fisher on the Stability(?) of General Equilibrium | Uneasy Money - October 2014
Although we routinely apply comparative-statics exercises to derive ... refutable propositions about the directional effects of a parameter change on some observable economic variable(s), ... those comparative-statics exercises are predicated on the assumption that the exercise starts from an initial position of equilibrium and that the parameter change leads, in a short period of time, to a new equilibrium. But there is no theory describing the laws of motion leading from one equilibrium to another, so the whole exercise is built on the mere assumption that a general equilibrium is sufficiently stable so that the old and the new equilibria can be usefully compared. In other words, microeconomics is predicated on macroeconomic foundations, i.e., the stability of a general equilibrium. The methodological demand for microfoundations for macroeconomics is thus a massive and transparent exercise in question begging. In his paper on the stability of general equilibrium, Fisher observes that there are four important issues to be explored by general-equilibrium theory: existence, uniqueness, optimality, and stability. Of these he considers optimality to be the most important, as it provides a justification for a capitalistic market economy. "Whether or not the actual economy is stable, we largely lack a convincing theory of why that should be so. Lacking such a theory, we do not have an adequate theory of value, and there is an important lacuna in the center of microeconomic theory. Yet economists generally behave as though this problem did not exist. Perhaps the most extreme example of this is the view of the theory of Rational Expectations that any disequilibrium disappears so fast that it can be ignored. (If the 50-dollar bill were really on the sidewalk, it would be gone already.) But this simply assumes the problem away. The pursuit of profits is a major dynamic force in the competitive economy. To only look at situations where the Invisible Hand has finished its work cannot lead to a real understanding of how that work is accomplished." -- downloaded pdf to Note
paper  macroeconomics  microfoundations  equilibrium  economic_theory  microeconomics  rational_expectations  downloaded  EF-add 
october 2014 by dunnettreader
Joseph E. Stiglitz - Reconstructing Macroeconomic Theory to Manage Economic Policy | NBER - September 2014
Macroeconomics has not done well in recent years: The standard models didn't predict the Great Recession; and even said it couldn't happen. After the bubble burst, the models did not predict the full consequences. The paper traces the failures to the attempts, beginning in the 1970s, to reconcile macro and microeconomics, by making the former adopt the standard competitive micro-models that were under attack even then, from theories of imperfect and asymmetric information, game theory, and behavioral economics. The paper argues that any theory of deep downturns has to answer these questions: What is the source of the disturbances? Why do seemingly small shocks have such large effects? Why do deep downturns last so long? Why is there such persistence, when we have the same human, physical, and natural resources today as we had before the crisis? The paper presents a variety of hypotheses which provide answers to these questions, and argues that models based on these alternative assumptions have markedly different policy implications, including large multipliers. It explains why the apparent liquidity trap today is markedly different from that envisioned by Keynes in the Great Depression, and why the Zero Lower Bound is not the central impediment to the effectiveness of monetary policy in restoring the economy to full employment. -- paywall
paper  paywall  macroeconomics  microfoundations  economic_theory  economic_models  Great_Recession  monetary_policy  Keynes  liquidity  fiscal_policy  Stiglitz 
september 2014 by dunnettreader
Capitalist Revolutionary — Roger E. Backhouse, Bradley W. Bateman | Harvard University Press
The Great Recession of 2008 restored John Maynard Keynes to prominence. After decades when the Keynesian revolution seemed to have been forgotten, the great British theorist was suddenly everywhere. The NYT asked, “What would Keynes have done?” The FT wrote of “the undeniable shift to Keynes.” Le Monde pronounced the economic collapse Keynes’s “revenge.” Two years later, following bank bailouts and Tea Party fundamentalism, Keynesian principles once again seemed misguided or irrelevant to a public focused on ballooning budget deficits. In this readable account, Backhouse and Bateman elaborate the misinformation and caricature that have led to Keynes’s repeated resurrection and interment since his death in 1946. Keynes’s engagement with social and moral philosophy and his membership in the Bloomsbury Group of artists and writers helped to shape his manner of theorizing. Though trained as a mathematician, he designed models based on how specific kinds of people (such as investors and consumers) actually behave—an approach that runs counter to the idealized agents favored by economists at the end of the century. Keynes wanted to create a revolution in the way the world thought about economic problems, but he was more open-minded about capitalism than is commonly believed. He saw capitalism as essential to a society’s well-being but also morally flawed, and he sought a corrective for its main defect: the failure to stabilize investment. Keynes’s nuanced views, the authors suggest, offer an alternative to the polarized rhetoric often evoked by the word “capitalism” in today’s political debates.
books  kindle-available  intellectual_history  20thC  entre_deux_guerres  economic_theory  macroeconomics  Great_Depression  gold_standard  public_finance  unemployment  capitalism  moral_philosophy  political_economy  economic_culture  economic_reform  economic_policy  probability  behavioral_economics  microfoundations  neoclassical_economics  Keynes  Keynesianism  Great_Recession  investment 
september 2014 by dunnettreader
Lance Taylor - Maynard's Revenge: The Collapse of Free Market Macroeconomics (2011) | Harvard University Press
Taylor argues that the ideas of J.M. Keynes and others provide a more useful framework both for understanding the crisis and for dealing with it effectively. Keynes’s basic points were fundamental uncertainty and the absence of Say’s Law. He set up machinery to analyze the macro economy under such circumstances, including the principle of effective demand, liquidity preference, different rules for determining commodity and asset prices, distinct behavioral patterns of different collective actors, and the importance of thinking in terms of complete macro accounting schemes. Economists working in this tradition also worked out growth and cycle models. Employing these ideas throughout Maynard’s Revenge, Taylor provides an analytical narrative about the causes of the crisis, and suggestions for dealing with it. 1. Macroeconomics. 2. Macroeconomic Thought during the Long 19thC. 3. Gold Standard, Reparations, Mania, Crash, and Depression. 4. Maynard Ascendant. 5. Keynesian Growth, Cycles, and Crisis. 6. The Counterrevolution. 7. Finance. 8. The International Dimension. 9. Keynesianism and the
books  intellectual_history  economic_theory  economic_history  economic_models  18thC  19thC  20thC  social_sciences-post-WWII  entre_deux_guerres  political_economy  macroeconomics  classical_economics  neoclassical_economics  Keynes  Keynesianism  Post-Keynesian  finance_capital  financial_economics  microfoundations  EMH  rational_expectations  rationality-economics  rationality-bounded  behavioral_economics  business_cycles  Great_Depression  Great_Recession  financial_crisis  gold_standard  economic_growth  international_monetary_system  balance_of_payments  FX  uncertainty  liquidity  savings  Labor_markets  wages 
september 2014 by dunnettreader
Alex Rosenberg - Paul Krugman’s Philosophy of Economics, and What It Should Be » 3:AM Magazine
All the New Classical economists need to defend the dominant “paradigm” in economics against Krugman and other dissenters are the tools he grants them—maximization and equilibrium. -- Rosenberg then goes into Keynes, Knight, Soros re uncertainty and reflexivity. Comes up with too strong a conclusion that since economics is an historical science, you can't make predictions. But there's a big difference between predictions of a long term outcome, or even a specific business cycle and yet have history-confirmed principles that, e.g. fiscal policy should be countercyclical or that a balance sheet recession is unlikely to push prices up, and monetary policy loses traction so it's not going to generate inflation, or a monetary union without a fiscal union and consolidated banking regulation is likely to blow up. Worse, Rosenberg is reiterating the false myth that the Keynesian thinking couldn't explain the 1970s and the New Classicals could. History contradicts the macro implications of EMH, Ricardian equivalence, RBC, etc. Actually it was Friedman monetarism that "explained" the 1970s, and when Friedman theory was attempted in the 1980s it had to be abandoned since it simply didn't work. The New Classicals were initially along for the monetarism ride and consolidated ideologically in academia by ignoring real world failures, which were relatively unimportant during the Great Moderation which they claimed to have produced or at least understood.
economic_history  intellectual_history  economic_theory  macroeconomics  microfoundations  neoclassical_economics  Keynesian  political_economy  philosophy_of_social_science  methodology  monetarism  monetary_policy  fiscal_policy  causation-social  mechanism  systems_theory  complexity  risk-systemic  uncertainty  probability 
september 2014 by dunnettreader
JW Mason - The Slack Wire: Liquidity Preference on the F Line - August 2014
Orthodox macroeconomics treats money as neutral in long run but provision of credit and liquidity has real effects on economic activity. And what's the mechanism for increased money supply producing nothing but price increase in long run. Long excerpts from Hume who starts out with neutral money taking it to logical conclusion that banks should just lock up deposits. And later remarking on the positive effects of secured lines of credit. Interesting discussion in comments on microfoundations of mainstream macro producing contradictions
macroeconomics  money  money_supply  liquidity  credit  microfoundations  EF-add 
august 2014 by dunnettreader
Bert De Munck - Conventions, the Great Transformation and Actor Network Theory | JSTOR: Historical Social Research / Historische Sozialforschung, Vol. 37, No. 4 (142) (2012), pp. 44-54
This article proceeds from the field of tension between the synchronical approach of the economics of convention and the diachronical approach of economic anthropology (in the tradition of Karl Polanyi). It is argued that the economics of convention remain problematic to historians in that they fail to capture the long term transformations traditionally referred to as the emergence of modernity and the coming about of homo economicus. As a possible solution, the use of concepts and insights from Actor Network Theory is proposed. While this cluster of theories enables an historical perspective without considering modernity as a natural process, it confronts changing relationships between subjects, objects and cultural systems of meaning head on. -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  economic_sociology  economic_culture  markets  conventions  regulation  structure  microfoundations  historical_sociology  modernity  capitalism  synchronic  dyachronic  anthropology  Polanyi_Karl  Actor_Network_Theory  downloaded  EF-add 
june 2014 by dunnettreader
Kurtuluş Gemici - Uncertainty, the problem of order, and markets: a critique of Beckert, "Theory and Society", May 2009 | JSTOR: Theory and Society, Vol. 41, No. 1 (January 2012), pp. 107-118
Jens Beckert's 2009 article on the constitution and dynamics of markets is a bold attempt to define a novel research agenda. Deeming uncertainty and coordination essential for the constitution of social action in markets, Beckert proposes a framework centered on the resolution of three coordination problems: valuation, cooperation, and competition. The empirical study of these three coordination problems has the potential to contribute considerably to the sociological analysis of markets. However, the assertion that such a theoretical vantage point can explain the constitution and dynamics of markets is not compelling because it (1) conflates social interaction with social structures, (2) fails to address power relations, institutions, and macro-level structures, and (3) neglects the historically contingent and socially contested nature of markets themselves. The present article shows that these three pitfalls are the result of starting from the problem of order and building upon uncertainty as the basis of action in markets, lending the suggested framework a methodologically individualist bent. Therefore, Beckert's suggested framework is in danger of mystifying the very power relations, institutions, and macro-level structures that are at the heart of the constitution and dynamics of markets. -- paywall -- see bibliography on jstor information page
article  jstor  paywall  economic_sociology  markets  institutions  networks-exchange  networks-information  networks-business  action-social  power  microfoundations  agency-structure  bibliography 
june 2014 by dunnettreader
Milan Z. Zafirovski - Spencer Is Dead, Long Live Spencer: Individualism, Holism, and the Problem of Norms | JSTOR: The British Journal of Sociology, Vol. 51, No. 3 (Sep., 2000), pp. 553-579
The debate between the advocates of sociological individualism and those of holism has been pervasive in the development of social theory. This debate is often situated in the false problems of sociology, since it is seen as a particular form of the perennial and irresolvable dilemma between social nominalism and realism, as well as between freedom and determinism. Nevertheless, the debate is far from over within contemporary sociology and other social science, as indicated by the resurgence of individualism in rational action theory and its repudiation by holistic social theories. The aim of this paper is to identify some modern variations on this theme as well as to discern certain common tendencies of two seemingly opposite theoretical perspectives, viz. the convergence upon a normative solution to the problem of social order. This convergence is therefore denoted normative convergence between sociological individualism and holistic sociology. -- paywall -- large references list
article  jstor  paywall  intellectual_history  social_theory  individualism-methodology  rational_choice  microfoundations  social_order  norms  bibliography  EF-add 
may 2014 by dunnettreader
Dieter Bögenhold - Social Network Analysis and the Sociology of Economics: Filling a Blind Spot with the Idea of Social Embeddedness | JSTOR: The American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Vol. 72, No. 2 (APRIL, 2013), pp. 293-318
Today, social networks analysis has become a cross-disciplinary subject with applications in diverse fields of social and economic life. Different network designs provide different opportunities to communicate, to receive information, and to create different structures of cultural capital. Network analysis explores modes and contents of exchanges between different agents when symbols, emotions, or goods and services are exchanged. The message of the article is that social network analysis provides a tool to foster the understanding of social dynamics, which enhances recent debate on a micro-macro gap and on limitations of the cognitive and explanatory potential of economics. -- paywall -- large references list quite interesting
article  jstor  social_theory  economic_theory  economic_sociology  networks-social  structure  social_order  social_capital  cultural_capital  symbolic_interaction  markets  microfoundations  rationality-economics  bibliography  EF-add 
may 2014 by dunnettreader
Robert's Stochastic thoughts: Thoughts on "Paradigm Shifts" - April 2014
I think macroeconomics works OK provided one sticks to 1972 vintage macroeconomics. Or in other words, Krugman usually seems to know what is going to happen next, so what's the problem. I'd say the rest of economics is doing much better than macro. A huge amount of current research is solidly empirical based on experiments or natural experiments. Research doesn't need a general theory to progress. We can learn what sort of policies work without theory.
economic_theory  economic_models  macroeconomics  microeconomics  microfoundations  behavioral_economics  social_theory 
may 2014 by dunnettreader
Brad DeLong | Macroeconomics’s “Faustian Bargain”?: Thursday Focus: February 20, 2014 | EquitaBlog
Roundup of Wren-Lewis, Dillow, Noah Smith, Krugman re microfoundations and Brad's itemization of bad microfoundations of New Keynesian models, with a lovely passage from Solow.
economic_theory  macroeconomics  economic_models  microfoundations 
february 2014 by dunnettreader
Gary Alan Fine : The Sad Demise, Mysterious Disappearance, and Glorious Triumph of Symbolic Interactionism | Annual Review of Sociology, Vol. 19 (1993), pp. 61-87
Very useful intellectual history and status of sociology theory streams, research programs,cross boundary links, borrowings etc-- downloaded pdf to Note The Sad Demise, Mysterious Disappearance, and Glorious Triumph of Symbolic Interactionism Gary Alan Fine Annual Review of Sociology Vol. 19, (1993) (pp. 61-87) Page Count: 27 Symbolic interactionism has changed over the past two decades, both in the issues that practitioners examine and in its position within the discipline. Once considered adherents of a marginal oppositional perspective, confronting the dominant positivist, quantitative approach of mainstream sociology, symbolic interactionists find now that many of their core concepts have been accepted. Simultaneously their core as an intellectual community has been weakened by the diversity of interests of those who self-identify with the perspective. I examine here four processes that led to these changes: fragmentation, expansion, incorporation, and adoption. I then describe the role of symbolic interactionism in three major debates confronting the discipline: the micro/macro debate, the structure/agency debate, and the social realist/interpretivist debate. I discuss six empirical arenas in which interactionists have made major research contributions: social coordination theory, the sociology of emotions, social constructionism, self and identity theory, macro-interactionism, and policy-relevant research. I conclude by speculating about the future role of interactionism.
article  jstor  intellectual_history  lit_survey  20thC  social_theory  pragmatism  Mead  constructivism  microfoundations  methodology  causation-social  agency-structure  networks  organizations  self  identity  emotions  sociology  society  social_sciences-post-WWII  postmodern  feminism  meaning  symbolic_interaction  downloaded  EF-add 
november 2013 by dunnettreader
Daniel Little - Understanding Society: Meso causes and microfoundations | September 10 2013
In earlier posts I've paid attention to the need for microfoundations and the legitimacy of meso-level causation. And I noted that there seems to be a prima facie tension between the two views in the philosophy of social science. I believe the two are compatible if we understand the microfoundations thesis as a claim about social ontology and not about explanation, and if we interpret it in a weak rather than a strong way. Others have also found this tension to be of interest. The September issue of The Philosophy of the Social Sciences" provides a very interesting set of articles on this set of issues.

Particularly interesting is a contribution by Tuukka Kaidesoja, "Overcoming the Biases of Microfoundations: Social Mechanisms and Collective Agents".
social_theory  microfoundations  causation  mechanism  mesolevel  organizations  critical_realism  EF-add 
september 2013 by dunnettreader
Daniel Little - Understanding Society: Social mechanisms and meso-level causes September 2013
Paper downloaded to Note -- blog post summarizes and has lots of links to useful recent lit -- (This post summarizes a paper I presented at the British Society for the Philosophy of Science Annual Meeting in 2012.)

Here and elsewhere I want to defend the theoretical possibility of attributing causal powers to meso-level social entities and structures. In this I follow a number of philosophers and sociologists, including many critical realists (e.g. Roy Bhaskar, A Realist Theory of Science and Margaret Archer, Realist Social Theory: The Morphogenetic Approach) and also the recent thinking of Dave Elder-Vass (The Causal Power of Social Structures). But I also defend the idea of an actor-centered sociology, according to which the substance of social phenomena is entirely made up of the actions, interactions, and states of mind of socially constituted individual actors. Making out both positions, and demonstrating their consistency, is the work of this paper. I refer to this position as “relative explanatory autonomy” of the meso-level. This topic is of renewed interest because of the current influence and progress of analytical sociology (Peter Hedström, Dissecting the Social: On the Principles of Analytical Sociology; Hedström and Bearman, The Oxford Handbook of Analytical Sociology ; Peter Demeulenaere, Analytical Sociology and Social Mechanisms), which offers an emphatic “no” to the question; whereas critical realists are equally firm in defending an affirmative answer to the question.
social_theory  philosophy_of_science  ontology-social  microfoundations  causation  mesolevel  mechanism  critical_realism  downloaded  EF-add 
september 2013 by dunnettreader

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