Inspired by recent developments in science studies, this book offers an innovative type of analysis of the recent history of rational expectations economics. In the course of exploring the multiple dimensions of rational expectations analysis, Professor Sent focuses on the work of Thomas Sargent, an instrumental pioneer in the development of this school of thought. The investigation attempts to avoid a Whiggish history that sees Sargent's development as inevitably progressing to better and better economic analysis. Instead, it provides an illustration of what happened to the approach through a contextualization of Sargent's work vis-á-vis that of other scholars and ideas. The treatment aims to illuminate some of the shifting negotiations and alliances that characterize the rise and shift of direction in rational expectations economics. The Evolving Rationality of Rational Expectations won the 1998 Gunnar Myrdal Prize of the European Association for Evolutionary Political Economy for the best monograph on a theme broadly in accord with the EAEPE Theoretical Perspectives.
• Analyses the changing ideas of Thomas Sargent, a major modern economic theorist and pioneer of rational expectations analysis • Offers a wider perspective on Sargent's work than is otherwise available through discussions of philosophy, science studies, physics, engineering and artificial intelligence • Employs an original and authoritative approach, inspired by science studies
Acknowledgements; 1. Introduction; 2. Accommodating randomness; 3. Accommodating prediction; 4. Accommodating symmetry; 5. Accommodating learning; 6. An interview with Thomas Sargent; 7. Conclusion; Notes; References; Index.
'There is no similarly detailed and complete study of any major figure in the new classical economics. Professor Sent clearly knows a great deal about her subject and is able to convey a great deal to the reader.' Kevin D. Hoover, University of California, Davis
'Sent's book is like no other work in the history of economic thought. The subject matter is contemporary macroeconomic theory, and the dominant themes are symmetry, reflexivity, and the interest-ladenness of scientific theory. It is a fascinating story: provocative as well as compelling.' D. Wade Hands, University of Paget Sound
'[A] magnificent assessment of Sargent's theoretical achievements.' M.M.G. Fase, De Economist