2016

Behavioral Economics – Pro-Government Bias?

2016-04-17 Value Walk/Library of Economics and Liberty

Critics of behavioral economics often accuse its practitioners of a tacit double standard: Human irrationality is a poor argument for government action because officials are human, writes Bryan Caplan, asking if behavioral economists can neglect such a basic critique of their position: "Yes. In “Time for a Behavioral Political Economy” (Review of Austrian Economics 2012), Niclas Berggren [IFN ]classifies over 300 papers in behavioral economics. The main finding is that "20.7% of all articles in behavioral economics ... contain a policy recommendation and that 95.5% of these do not contain any analysis at all of the rationality or cognitive ability of policymakers".

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