Can behavioural economics contribute to feminist discussions?
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Feminist and other heterodox economists have provided a detailed and sustained critique of the standard model of an economic decision maker: Homoeconomicus, or rational economic man. The notions of rationality embedded in this model, its asocial and context-free nature, as well as its complete absence of emotion have all drawn extensive and well deserved criticism. Recent developments in behavioural economics provide an opportunity to bring these critiques forward again and to advance the development of more descriptively relevant and inclusive models of decision making. In particular, Daniel Kahneman?s Nobel Lecture of 2002 identifies opportunities to move beyond rational framings of decision making; to explore the importance of intuitive thought; and to examine the fundamental importance of contextual factors on the judgments and behaviours of individuals. In doing so, Kahneman?s lecture creates avenues for feminist and other heterodox researchers to further advance and disseminate their understandings of decision making.
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