Economist in a library Sergei Savostyanov/Getty Images

披着人文外衣的经济学

芝加哥—在一份2006年的调查中,美国大学教授被问及,是从多种研究领域中汲取知识更好,还是专注于一个领域更好。在心理学教授中间,79%的人热衷于跨学科学习,社会学教授的这一比例为73%,历史学教授为68%。最不热衷的教授呢?经济学。只有42%的受访经济学教授同意应该通过跨学科视角看待世界。一位观察家尖锐地指出:“经济学家真的认为他们没有什么可以从别人身上学习的。”

事实上,如果经济学家能够拓宽视野,将大受其益。如果将经济学看成是真正的人类之学,那么经济学可以从人文学科中学到很多东西。其模型将变得更加现实,其预测将变得更加准确,而经济政策也可以变得更加有效和公平。

不管是思考如何在多样化的文化中打造经济增长——当大学通过牺牲学生来追求自身利益时,就产生了道德问题——还是与医疗、婚姻和家庭有关的非常个人的问题,经济学洞见都是必要而不充分的。如果我们只考虑这些洞见,政策就会失之偏颇,人民也会蒙受损失。

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