Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Paper Series,
Stockholm University, Swedish Institute for Social Research

No 6/2006: Is There a Free-Market Economist in the House? The Policy Views of American Economic Association Members

Charlotta Stern () and Daniel B. Klein ()
Additional contact information
Charlotta Stern: Swedish Institute for Social Research, Stockholm University, Postal: SE-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
Daniel B. Klein: George Mason University, USA, (and Ratio Institute, Stockholm)., Postal: Department of Economics, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA 22030, USA

Abstract: People often suppose or imply that free-market economists constitute a significant portion of all economists. We surveyed American Economic Association members and asked their views on 18 specific forms of government activism. We find that about 8 percent of AEA members can be considered supporters of free-market principles, and that less than 3 percent may be called strong supporters. The data is broken down by voting behavior (Democratic or Republican). Even the average Republican AEA member is “middle-of-the-road,” not free-market. We offer several possible explanations of the apparent difference between actual and attributed views.

Keywords: -

32 pages, April 2, 2006

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