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El mercado cerrado de las ideas económicas

MILÁN – Imagine que se queda dormido en 2006 y despierta hoy. Apenas reconocería la economía mundial. Mientras soñaba con riquezas inmobiliarias, Estados Unidos y Europa sufrían la crisis más devastadora en casi 80 años, y la economía estatista de China comenzaba a superar a Alemania y Japón hasta convertirse en la segunda mayor del mundo (y, a pesar de su reciente desaceleración, se encamina hoy a superar a Estados Unidos).

Considerando la escala y lo inesperado de estos cambios, probablemente se sentiría aún más sorprendido por lo que no cambió: el modo como los economistas piensan de sí mismos y su disciplina.

Para verlo, basta con mirar el sitio web Ideas.RePEc.org. RePEc (por Research Papers in Economics, Estudios de Investigación sobre Economía) es lo más parecido a una jerarquía fiable de economistas, y no muy diferente a las clasificaciones de la ATP de tenistas profesionales. El sitio es gratuito y de libre acceso (gracias a cientos de voluntarios en 82 países), mantiene una base de datos descentralizada de cerca de dos millones de artículos de investigación económica, académicos y de revistas, así como libros y software. Su índice de influencia evalúa la cantidad de veces que se cita a cada autor: en la ponderación influyen el impacto y la antigüedad de la cita (a la baja, pues de lo contrario probablemente Adam Smith y Karl Marx la encabezarían).

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