Should Economists Have A Code Of Ethics? They're About To Vote On It

Most professions, like lawyers, doctors, scientists, and sociologists adopted a code of ethics long ago but that could change soon for one of the lone holdouts, the curmudgeonly economists. Their big conference kicks off today in Denver. On the agenda is whether they should adopt such a code. A little movie called Inside Job might have something to do with it.

The film excoriated big-time economists who didn’t close they were getting paid by Wall Street while they were weighing in on both the bubble’s burst and the efforts to clean it up. In essence, they were cashing in their rep to burnish the banks’ gold-plated cowpies.

The profession, as represented by the American Economic Association, has deflected calls for such a code before, but this time the time could be right for a good kick in the pants.

The Economics of Economists’ Ethics [Slate]
Academic Economists to Consider Ethics Code [NYT]