Thomas Homer-Dixon @ The 2011 Bretton Woods Conference

Posted: December 25, 2011 in Uncategorized
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I recently stumbled upon a great collection of resources by The Institute for New Economic Thinking.

From INET’s “About” page:

The Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET) was created to broaden and accelerate the development of new economic thinking that can lead to solutions for the great challenges of the 21st century.

The havoc wrought by our recent global financial crisis has vividly demonstrated the deficiencies in our outdated current economic theories, and shown the need for new economic thinking – right now.

INET is supporting this fundamental shift in economic thinking through research funding, community building, and spreading the word about the need for change. We already are a global community of thousands of new economic thinkers, ranging from Nobel Prize winning economists to teachers and students who have emerged out from the shadows of prevailing economic thought, attracted by the promise of a free and open economic discourse.

Having graduated from business school in 2007, just before the monetary/financial/economic crisis really kicked into high gear, I’ve grown increasingly interested in how the economics profession (among other culpable professions/schools of thought) could fail so miserably at seeing what was coming and how it would impact our societies.  Granted, I only studied economics & finance in the context of a general business administration education, but I realized that economic theory was the intellectual bedrock upon which many important theories taught in business school rested.  If the intellectual foundation of economics resembled a castle made of sand, then I figured that, as Jimi Hendrix sang, it would “fall into the sea, eventually.”  Whether or not mainstream economic thinking has fallen into the sea, is open to debate.  But I would argue that organizations like INET, the New Economics Foundation, and others, are a clear indication that there is a growing appetite for a major re-thinking of economics.

Although I just found out about INET, I must say that I’m impressed with the quality of content & thinkers profiled on its website.  I still have more to explore about INET, but the fact that I found recorded interviews and talks by thinkers like Thomas Homer-Dixon, Satyajit Das, and William Rees, makes me confident that there is a wealth of relevant, and leading-edge thought going on in this community.

On that note, I wanted to embed a video of a talk given by one of the major intellectual influences of this blog – Thomas Homer-Dixon.  The talk, given at the 2011 Bretton Woods Conference called Crisis & Renewal: International Political Economy at the Crossroads (link), discusses Homer-Dixon’s recent thinking on complexity theory as it pertains to economics & public policy.

More on Thomas Homer-Dixon:

More on the Institute for New Economic Thinking:

More on other organizations & schools of thinking related to heterodox economics:

  • Institute for Integrated Economic Research (link)
  • New Economics Foundation (link)

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