Tiago Mata

Senior Research Associate
Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge

My research interests are in the history of economic journalism and the uses of economics in the public sphere. I have published research articles in the journals History of Political Economy, Science in Context, Journal of the History of Economic Thought, Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences, and Minerva. I post my research work and a few other writings on my website. I concluded my PhD from the London School of Economics in 2006 on the origins of dissenting economics in North America, the thesis is forthcoming as a book. I have been an organizer of the Conference on the History of Recent Economics (HISRECO) since 2007, and was a co-organizer of the 2010 meetings of the European Society for the History of Economic Thought (ESHET). I am currently the principal investigator a European Research Council funded project on the history and sociology of economic journalism, titled "Economics in the Public Sphere". I am based at the Department of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Cambridge.

My Content

Last Spring Larry Summers wounded Thomas Piketty in a friendly embrace. In a review of Capital in the Twenty-first century, Summers praised Piketty’s contributions in data mining and analysis and in a flight of enthusiasm he deemed the contributions deserving of a Nobel.
We invited Thomas Scheiding from Cardinal Stritch University to review what we know about the scholarly communication process in economics. Tom has written forcefully on the history and economics of economic literature (see for instance, his 2009 JEM article). His latest is a study of the scholarly communication process in physics (an article in Studies).
In the past decade, the volume of literature in the history of economics has been of 500 articles and just under 50 books a year. The graph below traces the count in two year intervals (articles left axis, books right axis). The absolute volume is stable but given the growth of economic literature in the period, stable might be rebranded as static.
Historians like labels. X history. History of y. The labels carve out subjects, set boundaries in time and space, at times even suggest methodological commitments.

My Video Content

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How to become a historian of economic thought? Members of the profession gather just once a year at the annual conference of the History of Economic Society but otherwise are dispersed in universities and archives all around the world.

That’s why Tiago Mata and other young aspiring historians of economics decided to launch a group writing project to keep in touch and share ideas even when far apart. That project spawned the History of Economics Playground, a blog hosted on the Institute for New Economic Thinking’s website. Through their blog, Mata and his colleagues are bringing new perspectives and a wider audience to economic history.