Daniel Kahneman and the Behavioral Economics of Cognitive Mistakes

Authored by: Floris Heukelom

Routledge Handbook of Behavioral Economics

Print publication date:  July  2016
Online publication date:  August  2016

Print ISBN: 9781138821149
eBook ISBN: 9781315743479
Adobe ISBN: 9781317589242


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Daniel Kahneman (b.1934) is one half of the Kahneman–Tversky dyad that rose to prominence in the 1970s through their work on heuristics, biases, and prospect theory. Subsequently, Kahneman, together with Richard Thaler (Chapter 8 this volume) and Eric Wanner in particular, initiated a new program on the border of economics and psychology, for which they quickly appropriated the label of behavioral economics. Based on these contributions, Kahneman received the Nobel Prize in economics in 2002. In this chapter I will first provide an overview of Kahneman’s work, based on Heukelom (2014). Thereafter, I will briefly situate Kahneman’s work in the history of the mind–body distinction, show how Kahneman’s work is one example of the methodological problem that everything is evolution, and set out why Kahneman’s work is best seen as an illustration of postwar American pragmatic liberalism.

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