Econintersect: Steve Keen has accepted appointment to head the department of Economics, History and Politics at Kingston University London. Kingston is a university of 22,000+ students (undergraduate and postgraduate), 2,100+ staff and an economics department of 21 faculty. Keen will be in charge of establishing a world class heterodox economics department at Kingston.
In a statement released by IDEA (Institute for Dynamic Economic Analysis) for which Keen serves as Chief Economist, he said the following:
Kingston will respond positively to calls from students for genuine reform of economics education-like those made by the Post-Crash Economics Society in Manchester, and the International Student Initiative for Pluralism in Economics (which was launched only days ago).
These student calls for genuine reform are timely, because though there are some initiatives for reform, academic economics has, if anything, become more hostile to criticism of the mainstream and to presentation of alternative perspectives than it was before the crisis.
Kingston is different. It already has a curriculum that teaches both mainstream and non-orthodox approaches. We will develop this further in the coming years to provide an education that is mindful of the need for economics to be humble after its many failures.
These include not merely the failure of Neoclassical economics to foresee the financial crisis-and its contribution to that crisis by championing the financial products that made the crisis so severe-but also the failure of Marxian economics to foresee the many problems that led to the collapse of centrally planned economies two decades earlier.
The guiding principles in developing Kingston’s approach will be, firstly, that there is no “right” school of economic thought today, so that all schools of thought deserve to be taught; and secondly, that nothing in economics is sacred, so that different approaches should be taught “warts and all”-with their weaknesses noted as well as their strengths.