Title: Old habits die hard: or, why has economics not become an evolutionary science?

Authors: Erkan Gürpinar; Altug Yalcintas

Addresses: Department of Economics, Social Sciences University of Ankara, Ankara, Turkey ' Department of Economics, Ankara University, Ankara, Turkey

Abstract: In this article, we explain why economics has not become an evolutionary science since Veblen published his seminal 1898 paper, 'Why is economics not an evolutionary science?' One cause of economists' reluctance to displace non-evolutionary preconceptions in economics is that the history of economics in the second half of the 20th century has been characterised by conceptual schizophrenia, defined as a state where economists do not change their minds although critical scientists provide abundant counter-arguments and refuting evidence. The (evolutionary) 'drift' that Veblen thought would transform economics into an evolutionary science has become an evolutionary process itself. We argue that an alternative path for the heterodoxy, akin to speciation in biology, is needed.

Keywords: evolutionary economics; habits of thought; intellectual path dependence; conceptual schizophrenia; speciation; Veblen.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPEE.2018.092230

International Journal of Pluralism and Economics Education, 2018 Vol.9 No.1/2, pp.216 - 232

Received: 28 Jul 2017
Accepted: 23 Jan 2018

Published online: 01 Jun 2018 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article