Sine praejudicio? Economics and the 2014 Scottish independence referendum

Dow, S., McMaster, R. and Cumbers, A. (2018) Sine praejudicio? Economics and the 2014 Scottish independence referendum. Cambridge Journal of Economics, 42(3), pp. 597-615. (doi: 10.1093/cje/bex091)

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The purpose of this paper is to analyse the contribution of expert economic opinion to the 2014 referendum campaigns on Scottish independence. We argue that the input from economics to both sides of the debate, as well as to independent analysis, was constrained by a mainstream economics framing. The result was a focus on calculable outcomes predicated on unchanging institutions and behaviour, and the question of currency arrangements that assumes the status quo is an optimal currency area. As the consequences of constitutional change for institutions and behaviour are uncertain, an equilibrium framework treats anything beyond calculable prediction as a shock, inducing fear of the unknown. In contrast, a political economy approach is tailored to analysing uncertain developments and encompassing the broader issues relating to values, democracy and power, and is thus better suited to the analysis of constitutional change.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:McMaster, Professor Robert and Cumbers, Professor Andrew
Authors: Dow, S., McMaster, R., and Cumbers, A.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > Adam Smith Business School > Management
Research Group:Entrepreneurship, Development, and Political Economy
Journal Name:Cambridge Journal of Economics
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN (Online):1464-3545
Published Online:26 January 2018
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2018 The Authors
First Published:First published in Cambridge Journal of Economics 42(3):597-615
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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