Positive Economics is a stream of economics that focuses on the description, quantification, and explanation of the developments in economics, the expectations, and the associated phenomena. It heavily relies on objective data analysis, relevant facts, and associated figures.
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The history of positive economics can be traced back to the 19th century from the ideas of John Neville Keynes and John Stuart Mill, who were early economists.
Keynes believed that logic and methodology were imperative in the study of economics while Mill was an economist who blended economics with philosophy. Mill also approached economics from data, such as the relationship between supply and demand, rather than the value perspective approach.
Later on, these ideas were adapted by contemporary economists and developed observations to back early economic theories.
Normative economics is what economists call as "what should have been" or "what ought to be" study. This stream of economics aims to determine people's desirability or lack thereof to various economic programs, situations and conditions by asking the questions: what should happen or what ough to be.
It leaves the door open for future changes, eliminates absolute statements, and provides an avenue for discussion.
John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946) was interested in the level of national income and the volume of employment rather than in the equilibrium of the firm or the allocation of resources.
He was still concerned with the problem of demand and supply, but “demand” in the Keynesian model means the total level of effective demand in the economy, while “supply” means the country’s capacity to produce. When effective demand falls short of productive capacity, the result is unemployment and depression; conversely, when demand exceeds the capacity to produce, the result is inflation.
The expectation of rewards may decrease the spontaneous interest in the activity to be rewarded. So it’s important to understand what the rewards should be and how they should be awarded to avoid this side effect.
Rewards should go beyond the usual healthcare and salary raise to provide a good work environment. The ideal is a corporate culture that recognizes good employees with nice perks and words of encouragement, but also provides a setting where people can grow, be heard, take ownership of their work and feel they have a purpose.
Adam Smith was an 18th-century Scottish economist, philosopher, and author. He is considered the father of modern economics.
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