INFRAMARGINAL ECONOMICS: AN OUTSIDER'S VIEW

Authors

  • PETER B. DIXON

    1. Centre of Policy Studies, Monash University
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      I thank: Maureen Rimmer for valuable discussions and assistance with the mathematics and computing; Alan Powell for comments on an earlier draft; and Guang-Zhen Sun for responding promptly and fully to queries. Christis Tombazos commented extensively on the entire manuscript. While it is clear that we disagree on some substantial issues concerning the role of economic theory and the contribution of inframarginal economics, I am indebted to Christis for the care with which he has reviewed my work


Abstract

My impressions of inframarginal economics are:

• It is best interpreted as providing underlying support for marginal economics.

• Inframarginalists take as self-evident that division of labour and specialisation economies are paramount in economic progress. To justify this, inframarginalists need to develop the empirical side of their field.

• Inframarginalists make insufficient use of computers. They specify stylised models, omitting many real-world phenomena that are routinely included in models computed for applied work. Inframarginalists seem wedded to analytical solutions.

• Inframarginalists write papers mainly for inframarginalists. They need to demonstrate the value of their work by making it relevant to others.

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