Economics: What to Do About an Unreformable Discipline?

9 Pages Posted: 10 Oct 2019

See all articles by Steve Keen

Steve Keen

Kingston University, London

Date Written: 2019


The 2008 crisis was an obvious anomaly for mainstream Neoclassical economic theory, and yet a decade after the crisis, the Neoclassical school still dominates the discipline and is largely unchanged. I argue that the separation of academic economics from the consequences of its empirical failures means that it is extremely unlikely that academic economics will be reformed. Instead, if change is to occur within economics, it will likely be led by institutions like central banks and treasuries which are under at least some pressure to produce useful economic forecasts. Apart from this, I hold out hope that emerging disciplines such as complex system analysis will supplant economics itself. I also encourage all would-be students of economics to join the Rethinking Economics network and teach themselves non-mainstream economics using the resources of the internet.

Keywords: Pedagogy, Paradigms, Education, Macroeconomics, Complex systems

JEL Classification: A2, B59, P41, Y8

Suggested Citation

Keen, Steve, Economics: What to Do About an Unreformable Discipline? (2019). Journal of King Abdulaziz University: Islamic Economics, Vol. 32, No. 2, 2019, Available at SSRN:

Steve Keen (Contact Author)

Kingston University, London ( email )

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