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Man, Money and Machines: The Contributions of A. W. Phillips

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  • A. W. H. PHILLIPS 50th ANNIVERSARY SYMPOSIUM
    In 1958, A. W. H. Phillips published in Economica what was to become one of the most widely cited articles ever written in economics. To mark the 50th anniversary of the paper, the New Zealand Association of Economists and the Econometric Society hosted the conference “Markets and Models: Policy Frontiers in the A. W. H. Phillips Tradition” in July 2008. The four articles that follow were originally presented at that conference.

Abstract

A. W. Phillips is widely known for the Phillips curve, from an article in Economica fifty years ago. Less well known is that he was an unusually talented electrical engineer who retrained as an economist and made pioneering, if unconventional, contributions across a wide range of macroeconomics: physical modelling, dynamic stabilization, continuous-time modelling and applied econometrics. In making these contributions, he was a child of his times. This paper focuses on the environment that helped make Phillips, what motivated his questions, how he formed his ideas, how he solved problems, and what difference that has made to the study of economics.

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