PoS seminar 23.5. with Antoinette Baujard

At the next Perspectives on Science seminar on Monday 23.5., Antoinette Baujard (Université Jean Monnet) will give a presentation titled “Ethical values and scientific integrity in normative economics”. The seminar takes place in Zoom from 14:15 to 15:45.

Perspectives on Science is a weekly research seminar which brings together experts from science studies and philosophy of science. It is organized by TINT – Centre for Philosophy of Social Science at the University of Helsinki. More information about the seminar here.

JOINING THE SEMINARS: To get a link for joining the seminars in Zoom, please contact research assistant jessica.north@helsinki.fi


This talk aims at discussing minimal criteria of scientific integrity in economics when social welfare is eventually the main challenge, as notably in welfare economics or in social choice theory. It is based on a typology of views regarding the positive-normative demarcation in normative economics (Baujard, A. Values in Welfare Economics, 2021, in Ch. 15: Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Economics, Conrad Heilmann and Julian Reiss Eds.). Elaborating on this typology, I first show that the best practices of scientific integrity should logically differ depending on how demarcation is viewed; I however emphasize that transparency rules and attention to entanglement issues remain prominent in every case. Second, focusing on normative transparency, I elaborate on a case study in voting theory, based on the experiment of different voting rules in French presidential elections: I defend my own view on the positive-normative demarcation, and the associated required values of scientific integrity in normative economics.

Author bio:

Antoinette Baujard is a Professor of Economics at Université Jean Monnet and a member of CNRS GATE Lyon Saint-Etienne. Her research is based on reflexive studies (concretely history and philosophy of science) on how economics deals with normative issues. It is meant to convey pragmatic knowledge regarding the properties of instruments of public decision, such as methods of evaluation of public policies, voting procedures, deliberative processes. She published papers in journals such as the Journal of Economic Methodology, Social Choice and Welfare, or The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, and book review in journals such as Economics and Philosophy, History of Political Economy or Oeconomia. Her last book, Welfare theory, public action and ethical values, co-edited with Roger Backhouse and T. Nishizawa, and published in 2021 at Cambridge University Press, revisited the history of welfare economics.