19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Rehabilitation of the dismal science:modern economics,
By A Customer
This review is from: On Ethics and Economics (The Royer lectures) (Paperback)
Modern economics represents what Prof. Sen refers to as the "engineering approach". It is concerned with technical issues such as supply and demand, the price mechanism. Economics should however be much more. Historically it was a branch of ethics. Adam Smith was a professor in moral philosophy. Its objective should be to understand and predict human behaviour involving economic relationships. "Engineering economics" is limited to the concept of the free market. With competition and the pursuit of economic self-interest society will become happy. This is dangerously wrong according to Prof. Sen. It is wrong because people are not motivated solely by economic self interest but also by fear, pride, hatreds, friendship, family ties and other ethical factors. It is dangerous because some persons have started to believe that the pursuit of economic self-interest is the only moral standard required. Such a belief endangers the well being of the world. The book provides an excellent framework why and how ethical considerations must be part of modern economics.