on Microeconomics in Context
Microeconomics in Context is the first textbook
to describe the workings of a modern economy through
the lens of "contextual economics." This
work builds upon the strengths of standard, neoclassical
economics, but takes account of environmental, technical,
institutional, political and social issues that are
neglected in other introductory "Principles"
textbooks. A transitional
economies version of Microeconomics in Context
has been published in Russian
and Vietnamese. Houghton Mifflin published the First Edition of Microeconomics in Context in 2005, as well as a 2008 Italian edition. In 2008 M.E. Sharpe published the Second Edition of Microeconomics in Context.
for this project came from a perceived need in transitional
economies for an economics principles text sensitive
to economic, political, and institutional upheaval
and uncertainty. Translated standard Western texts
commonly describe an idealized theoretical world that
bears little relation to the reality of a transitional
economy. Standard texts also largely disregard such
relevant and significant topics as environmental limits,
social and economic inequities, the value of household
production, and the importance of institutions and
customs. These limitations of existing Principles
texts led us to the conclusion supported by
the special interest of Nobel laureate Wassily Leontief
that a new text was needed which would present
the economic system within its social and physical
a presentation was greatly needed in transitional
economies, we firmly believe that many economics students
in the United States are also frustrated with the
abstract and confined exposition of most Principles
texts. With the help of many talented individuals,
the Microeconomics in Context project has
evolved along two lines; one version of the text appropriate
for transitional economies, and another version primarily
targeted for an audience in the United States.
of Microeconomics in Context for industrialized and transitional economies present
the workings of the economic system within a broader
social, cultural, environmental, and political context.
We call this approach to studying and understanding
the economic system contextual economics.
The contextual economics perspective differs from
standard economic presentations in that it recognizes
the critical importance of goals and values, the physical
and social context, and a wide range of commonly neglected
economic activities such as household production and
environmental protection. It is built on the premise
that economic activity should promote the well-being
of all people, including those of future generations.
Contextual economics is designed to be scientifically
defensible yet clear and relevant.
Defining Characteristics of Contextual Economics
(by Neva Goodwin, October 2002, .pdf file)
the First Edition of Microeconomics in Context
Came to be Written for Russia" (From
a Fall 1999 talk by Neva Goodwin)