Interdisciplinarity Chart of the Day
| Peter Klein |
This is from a study of economics PhD dissertations at one French university, the EHESS (École des hautes études en sciences sociales).
In the 1960s, three-fourths of economics PhD dissertation committee members were from another discipline, and in the 1990s, less than 15 percent. Other disciplines have also become more self-reliant, but in much less dramatic fashion.
The paper, “The Mainstreaming of French Economics” by Olivier Godechot is here and the pointer goes to Art Goldhammer. The paper focuses on the transformation of the French profession led by US-trained or -oriented economists such as Jacques Mairesse, Jean-Jacques Laffont, and Robert Boyer. Godechot concludes that “scientific life in general and, moreover, paradigmatic change are not only a question of truth, of evidences, and of proofs but also of politics. Evaluating, influencing, building coalitions, voting, and selecting are regular practices both within disciplines and in wider interdisciplinary arenas when articles are submitted, grants are distributed (Lamont, 2009), positions are opened (Musselin, 2005), and candidates are selected.” Right on that.