Socio-Economics: A Proposal for a New Interdisciplinary Field
Journal of Social Behavior and Personality. 1986, Vol. I, No.4, 475-482
Posted: 20 Dec 2017
Date Written: 1986
Psychologists (working with sociologists and political scientists) seem ready to go beyond piecemeal studies of economic behavior, or studies of economic behavior as merely incidents of general psychological theorems. They can formulate a new paradigm for the study of economic behavior. The unsatisfactory nature of the prevailing neo-classical paradigm has been well established. Economic behavior requires a distinct paradigm because rational choice behavior is a distinct subject. The new paradigm, the base for a new interdisciplinary field, referred to here as socioeconomics, must initially be highly parsimonious, without being excessively "underdetermined." It must answer at least four key questions: How do people actually make choices when they aspire to act rationally? What is the role of emotions and values, next to intra-cognitive factors, in such decisions? What is the role of groups in setting individual choices? And, what is the role of society? The answers may require collaboration of psychologists with other social scientists as well as the institutionalization of a new interstitial discipline.
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