George Shackle was one of the most original and thought-provoking economists of the twentieth century. The significant contributions he made to the issues of time, expectations and uncertainty ensured that he enjoyed an Olympian reputation within the discipline.
G.L.S. Shackle: The Dissenting Economist's Economist by J.L. Ford is a major new intellectual biography which places Shackle's work in context, assessing the importance of his long and prolific career. An opponent of much of the equilibrium-centred orthodoxy in economics, the overwhelming concern of Shackle's work was the nature of time. In his view, too much of economic theorising was concerned with a rigid, Newtonian definition of time, rather than one which emphasized human expectations and uncertainty. Central to his theory was a rejection of the notion of probability for unique decisions and its replacement by his own measure of uncertainty, the degree of potential surprise.
This important book charts the development of these ideas and their impact on his important work on the theory of interest rates, industrial investment, the business cycle, and the understanding and application of Keynes's economics. Professor Ford's authoritative and detailed study also covers Shackle's work on the major developments in the subject matter and tools of economics, including his unrivalled assessments of A Treatise on Money and the General Theory. It will be welcomed by historians of economic thought and all other economists, orthodox and non-orthodox alike, concerned with the pioneering work of one of the most important economists of our time.
J.L. Ford, Professor Emeritus, University of Birmingham, UK
George Lennox Sharman Shackle; time in economics, epistemics and economic methodology; Shackle's theory of decision-making under uncertainty - exposition, exegetical critique and some applications; uncertainty, potential surprise, probability and belief - appendix - portfolio selection and Shackle's theory of choice under uncertainty; experimental evidence, expected utility, ambiguity and Shackle's theory; expectations, investment, the business cycle and economic development - appendix - aggregate income and its 3-period moving average; the theory of investment in real capital, invention, innovation and the rate of interest; uncertainty, liquidity preference and the rate of interest; on the economics of Keynes; George Shackleton and history's likely verdict.