catallaxy files

catallaxy in technical exile

Good news everyone: Another Austrian revival!

with 8 comments

The really important Austrian revival can be dated to 1974 with a conference in a rather unlikely location at South Royalton. This revival refers to The Austrian Economists blog which has been resting for a little while.

Peter Boettke has posted his tribute to Kirzner on the occasion of his recent award.

And Fred Sautet has drawn attention to some work by Sandy Ikeda to blend Austrian ideas with the thoughts of Jane Jacobs on cities.

In other words, Sandy’s work shows that markets, the division of labor, and the division of knowledge originate in cities. Many abstractions that we study in economics are spatially related to the development of urban centers. The existence of trust and its link to the development of market relationships is also crucially dependent on the emergence of cities. Moreover, as Jacobs said, cities are to be seen as incubators for new ideas, i.e. entrepreneurship. Only cities offered the mix of institutions, social capital, and networks that would enable individuals to discover and exploit opportunities for investment and trade.

Sandy also developed in his address the ideas of “plantation economics” and that of “the re-urbanization of economics.” He further showed how his research on trust dwells with his work on cities. This is very impressive and insightful work. Congratulations Sandy for your research and your address!



Written by Admin

December 8, 2006 at 2:15 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

8 Responses

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  1. Austrian Economists is a group blog. For a group blog to add no new content for two weeks is very poor.

    Sinclair Davidson

    December 8, 2006 at 3:06 pm

  2. Rafi, one thing that most vibrant so called “schools” of economic thought seem to have in common is an ability to engage the interest of economists who do not belong to those schools. This is true of the Keynesian, Neoclassical, New Classical and New Keynsian schools.

    In what way have the Austrian School engaged the interest of mainstream economists in recent times?

    As an aside, it is funny how most of these schools seem to relate to macro rather than micro, although their differences often occur because of different assumptions at the microeconomic level. This probably explains why i don’t tend to classify myself along these lines. Being a microeconomist, these distinctions are not particularly relevant!!!

    Damien Eldridge

    December 8, 2006 at 4:30 pm

  3. The Austrians would be seen by most people as a somewhat eccentric subgroup of neoclassicals.

    More important than the question about the interest aroused by the Austrians is the question, what do the Keynesians and others have to offer to the major issues in political economy?

    Such as:

    The requirements for development in the Third World.

    The policies required to reduce the burden of public expenditure in the western democracies.

    How to liberate the underclass in the west and the people stuck in poverty traps generated by the welfare state.

    Rafe Champion

    December 8, 2006 at 5:20 pm

  4. Macro has always involved more disagreement.


    December 8, 2006 at 5:20 pm

  5. “The requirements for development in the Third World.”

    1. Suggest more redistibutive type aid.

    2. the merry go round of supranational lending resulting in default and have Bono coming out after each default begging for debt forgiveness

    3. Keeping western markets closed to the poor by arguing that globalization is a bad thing and proving this to be the case by throwing things at police and police horses.

    4 Offer the able services of the IMF which comes in and offers it’s usual poison of devaluation and tax hikes. Sure to get things moving back to Bono. see 3

    “How to liberate the underclass in the west and the people stuck in poverty traps generated by the welfare state.”

    Avoid negative tax and high zero tax thresholds and offer redistribution measures that cost $1.50 for every dollar coming in.

    Offer higher minimum wages in the case of the US Dems and promise rollback of labor reform in OZ.

    “The policies required to reduce the burden of public expenditure in the western democracies.”

    Offer even more like Bush, Howard and the leftist gaggle. Keep surpluses for the next guys to squander.

    how’s that, Rafe?


    December 8, 2006 at 5:31 pm

  6. “In what way have the Austrian School engaged the interest of mainstream economists in recent times?”


    Your stipulation is arbitrary and probably wrong. I’m not buying it.

    The Austrian school is just vastly superior.

    And particularly now that Reisman has re-integrated Austrian thinking with the British Classical School.

    And our terrific bloke Gerrard Jackson seems to be working on the same project in a less formal way.

    A thing stands and falls on its own soundness and not on the basis of your arbitrary stipulation about people who are just not-getting-it clubbing together.


    December 9, 2006 at 1:01 am

  7. “Being a microeconomist, these distinctions are not particularly relevant!!!”

    The great thing about the Austrians and Mises is that they don’t recognise any clear difference between Macro and Micro.

    In the Austrian school that Macros grows seamlessly out of the Micro which grows seamlessly out of human action.

    When I studied Marketing and microeconomics at the same time I always marvelled at how they were to a great degree the same subject but that the two schools of thought appeared to be entirely different.

    But had I been studying marketing and Austrian economics the two would have fitted together seamlessly.

    Non-Austrian micro-economics is probably quite bogus in many respects.


    December 9, 2006 at 1:09 am


    Very interesting archive video of Jane Jacobs.

    Actually skip that one. And go to the ones below first.

    The ones below are much more recent and she’s taken on a more libertarian approach, or so it seems.

    Here are some more. These are straight from Rafes wiki link.

    Getting a free enterprise approach to urban planning that leads to really nice cities to live in and extremely innovative and creative outcomes is just really critical to what we are about.

    For me getting rid of any height restrictions anywhere and getting seamless charging of road congestion going ought to allow the councils to sit back. And just allow the city to grow up naturally for the most part.


    December 9, 2006 at 1:41 pm

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