Document Type


Publication Date



I argue that the authors accept too casually the neo-classical framework of thought that was incapable of predicting choices in 2-person and other experimental games in the 1980s and 1990ss. The ex post hoc hypothesis that social preference can describe homo socialis reduces inevitably to a rescue of neo-classical economics in which Max-U (own payoff, other payoff) substitutes mechanically for Max-U (own payoff) in our personal groupings. This static procedure unnecessarily and inappropriately robs human conduct of its sociality as a process relationship. The model I articulate was masterfully developed by Adam Smith, which back-predicts the results of these earlier small group experiments, and argues the central importance of context—a finding of experimentalists in their attempt to come to terms with the predictive failures of Max-U (own payoff).


This article was originally published in Review of Behavioral Economics, volume 2, issue 1-2, in 2015. DOI: 10.1561/105.00000028

Peer Reviewed



The author



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.