Economic philosophy is a branch of the study of economics that studies the relationship between economic institutions and their effects on society. The field of economics is often described as the study of how the exchange of money affects the value of that money. Political economy is an interconnected interdisciplinary field of the social sciences which focuses on the relationships among various people, governments, public policy, and the relationship between individuals and their own personal economies. Those who study economic philosophy seeks to comprehend the way social customs, history, and culture affect an economic system.
Political science and economics are the same thing. Those with a degree in political science can earn a career in political research or administration, while those with a degree in economics can work in corporate finance, government, and the private sector.
Economists also study the effects of political and economic policies on society, such as the effects of tax cuts on labor market efficiency. In addition, those interested in politics and economics can study how public policy affects the economy through the interaction of political leaders and economic advisors.
Economic philosophy addresses issues such as the nature of government, the role of the state in the economy, and how the free market operates. Many of the economic and political theories in economics can be traced back to the philosopher of political economy, Adam Smith, who developed the theory of natural rights and the principles of capitalism. His writings have been used to justify the policies of every president from Lincoln to Hoover and every president since. Economists also have used Smith’s theories to help establish economic laws, such as the law of demand, supply, and competition.
An economic philosopher has also contributed to the theory of public choice. In this theory, political philosophers argue that an individual or a group of individuals have rights and a strong interest in how a decision is made, regardless of what other people think about the decision. Economists also use public choice to help determine which policies will best serve a society. Although some economists use the theory of public choice to help create policies, it is important to realize that those who are most interested in this type of economic theory usually have no influence on policy making, because the majority of people vote.
Political philosophy and economic philosophy are related but not the same. In political philosophy, the goal is to look at public choices from an individual perspective while in economic philosophy the goal is to look at public choices from an economic perspective. Because of this, many political economists tend to look at the economy as a whole, while economic economists tend to look at the economy in isolation. For example, some economists look at the economy as a unit and some look at the economy as an individual economy. Those interested in economics should also keep in mind that economics differs from political science in that political science relies more on personal freedom.