Beauty and the Economist: The Role of Aesthetics in Economic Theory

Posted: 24 Feb 2020

See all articles by Cassey Lee

Cassey Lee

University of Malaya - Faculty of Economics and Administration

Peter Lloyd

University of Melbourne - Department of Economics

Abstract

The importance of aesthetic considerations is widely acknowledged in mathematics and the natural sciences. Beauty motivates mathematical and scientific discoveries and serves as a criterion for their acceptance by the scientific community. In contrast, there is little attention to beauty in the models, theorems and other objects of economic theory. This holds even though mathematics is an important tool of economic analysis. The pure theory of international trade provides useful examples to discuss the role of aesthetics in economic theory. The central feature of the discipline of economics which distinguishes it from the natural sciences and appears to explain the paucity of beauty in economics is that economic models lack generality.

Suggested Citation

Lee, Cassey and Lloyd, Peter John, Beauty and the Economist: The Role of Aesthetics in Economic Theory. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=682853

Cassey Lee (Contact Author)

University of Malaya - Faculty of Economics and Administration ( email )

Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan 50603
University of Malaya (UM)
50603 Kuala Lumpur
Malaysia

Peter John Lloyd

University of Melbourne - Department of Economics ( email )

Melbourne, 3010
Australia

HOME PAGE: http://melbecon.unimelb.edu.au/staffprofile/plloyd/home.html

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
1,485
PlumX Metrics