Forging Fresh Tools from the Past

Professor John Smithin argues that new economic thinking is not only about new thinking but also about recovering past knowledge from past crises. He talks about the policy response from the 2008 crisis compared to the 1930s. Most crucially, however, he discusses why teaching economics before and after the crisis has not changed; but “business as usual” is not appropriate. He argues that we need to rethink the “consensus” with tools old and new, starting with the original premise of neoclassical economics that barter is not the basis of economic exchange. He also takes issue with the representative agent problem and the proposed solutions.

Share your perspective