Economics, Psychology and the History of Consumer Choice Theory

Cambridge Journal of Economics, 34, 2010, 633-48

21 Pages Posted: 23 May 2007 Last revised: 7 Oct 2016

D. Wade Hands

University of Puget Sound - Department of Economics

Date Written: April 1, 2009

Abstract

This paper examines elements of the complex place/role/influence of psychology in the history of consumer choice theory. The paper reviews, and then challenges, the standard narrative that psychology was "in" consumer choice theory early in the neoclassical revolution, then strictly "out" during the ordinal and revealed preference revolutions, now (possibly) back in with recent developments in experimental, behavioral, and neuroeconomics. The paper uses the work of particular economic theorists to challenge this standard narrative and then provides an alternative interpretation of the relationship between psychology and consumer choice theory. It concludes by discussing some of the implications of this complex history.

Keywords: Psychology, Demand Theory, Consumer Choice Theory, Behavioral Economics

JEL Classification: A12, B13, B21, B4, D11

Suggested Citation

Hands, D. Wade, Economics, Psychology and the History of Consumer Choice Theory (April 1, 2009). Cambridge Journal of Economics, 34, 2010, 633-48. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=988125

D. Wade Hands (Contact Author)

University of Puget Sound - Department of Economics ( email )

Tacoma, WA 98416

Paper statistics

Downloads
949
Rank
18,337
Abstract Views
3,886