Title

An Assessment of Nobel Laureate A.K. Sen’s Economic Method

SMC Author

Shyam Kamath

SMC Affiliated Work

1

Status

Faculty

School

School of Economics and Business Administration

Department

Management and Entrepreneurship

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2008

Publication Title

Journal of Interdisciplinary Economics

Description/Abstract

This article analyzes the methodological foundations of Nobel Laureate A.K. Sen’s economic method as it pertains to his work on equality, poverty and economic development. The fundamental approach of “functionings” and “capabilities” that has been the hallmark of Professor Sen’s approach to problems of inequality and development are first presented and the common bases identified. The basic methods used are then analyzed from a logical and empirical perspective. Three levels of economic discourse in Professor Sen’s work are examined in detail and a fundamental critique is developed on logical grounds. The adequacy of this approach is then scrutinized by contrasting alternative approaches of end-state and process notions of equality. These two notions are compared on nine characteristics and the underlying differences and methodological problems with these two approaches are then identified. A comprehensive critique is developed and the major shortcomings of Professor Sen’s method are detailed. Professor Sen’s approach is found to be inadequate on logical and empirical grounds. Hence, it is suggested that this approach may be an inappropriate guide for economic policy to facilitate human development.

Scholarly

yes

DOI

10.1177/02601079X08001900207

Disciplines

Business | Business Administration, Management, and Operations | Economics | Entrepreneurial and Small Business Operations

Original Citation

Kamath, S. (2008). An Assessment of Nobel Laureate A.K. Sen's Economic Method. Journal of Interdisciplinary Economics

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