Interactions between Psychology and Economics
|Nanjing Normal University
|psychology economics interaction interdiscipline
In this article, interactions between psychology and economics will be presented from following aspects:(1) About history: Psychology and economics both have their origins in the philosophy of the "British empiricist" school of the 17-19 centuries. But as they have developed in the 19-20 centuries, they have drifted further apart. In recent years, communications between these two disciplines appear to be more frequent.(2) About research field: With the development of psychology and economics, there are increasing research fields can be shared by these two disciplines, and they both benefit a lot from these "crossing boundaries".(3) About methods: The "import" of experimental method of psychology has spawned a methodological revolution in economics, and the new field "neuroeconomics" is found on functional brain imaging technology developed in cognitive neuroscience. As for psychologists, the behavioral game experiments as an experimental paradigm has great reference value for psychological experimental design, and the experimental practices in economics does worth the attention of psychologists.(4) About research achievements: The development of cognitive psychology makes it possible for behavioral economists to get more detailed "maps of bounded rationality", and Artificial Neural Network is already applied extensively in economic modeling. On the other hand, game theory, or "interactive decision theory" developed by economists can help psychologists enhance their understanding of conflict and cooperation.(5) About benefits: Interactions between psychology and economics has great help to confirm their co-development, enhance the inter-supplement of each other’s theoretical location and thinking style, and to deepen the investigation of given topic.(6) About prospect: There are several common theoretical turns like "post-modern" turn, "culture" turn and "hedonomics" turn in psychology and economics in recent year. Furthermore, there are many burgeoning research fields like institution analysis and complex adaptive system need for both psychologists’ and economists’ efforts. At last, a possible trend is that psychology and economics can be integrated on the basis of theory of evolution, game theory and rational actor model, and then facilitate the integration of all the human behavioral sciences.