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Interdisciplinarityin economic science: between imperialism and pluralism

TERRA ECONOMICUS, , Vol. 13 (no. 4),

In social sciences, interdisciplinary research is of increasing importance in the context of two economic crises – a crisis in economy in a crisis in economics. However, economic theory had historically expanded into allied social sciences by pursuing an agenda of economic imperialism. Economic imperialism may be seen as an attempt to monopolize the ideals and criteria of scientificity which had been shaped starting second half of XX century within the mainstream tradition. Dominance of the economic imperialism paradoxically has resulted in shrinking of the subject area of economic theory. Formalism and behavioral models of rational choice which are transferred by the economists to other social sciences, prevent investigation of complex adaptive systems and non-ergodic social processes. Adherence to the «ideals of scientificity» within the economic mainstream results in reductionism and unjustifiable simplification of the theoretical framework, compared to the real economic and social processes. Economic pluralism can be an alternative to economic imperialism. Economic pluralism is mainly associated with the heterodox approaches in social sciences. The key role of criticisms is recognized within these approaches, as well as the importance of a deliberative process between different approaches in social sciences. Interdisciplinarity is seen as one of the challenges in context of evolution of modern society. Interdisciplinary research complements social sciences and expands its frontiers, taking into account evolutionary nature of social development. Success of interdisciplinary research programs depends largely on integration of research and university education. If applied to the real economic processes, theories and methods of other social sciences help gain a better understanding of complex non-ergodic processes.

Keywords: interdisciplinary research; economic imperialism; economic pluralism; economic methodology; economic education

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Publisher: Southern Federal University
Founder: Southern Federal University
ISSN: 2073-6606