Models of Consumer Behaviour

  • Alan Brown
  • Angus Deaton

Abstract

In the history of demand analysis two threads, related but separable, can be discerned. These are first the work of economists interested in the discovery of general laws governing the operation of markets, particularly agricultural markets; and second the work of those, originally statisticians, interested in the psychological laws governing what has come to be called consumer preference. This dichotomy continues to characterise the subject. As computing opportunities and skills have expanded, empirical research has produced more sophisticated demand equations while, at the same time, theoretical economists and mathematicians have enormously increased our knowledge of the pure mathematics of preference relations. While these two activities have not always been in balance, the great strength of empirical demand analysis has been the existence of strong theoretical foundations which could be drawn upon or modified as practice demanded. This interplay between the theory and reality has been perhaps more fruitful in this than in any other branch of economics.

Keywords

Sugar Europe Covariance Income Assure 

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© The Royal Economic Society and the Social Science Research Council 1973

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alan Brown
  • Angus Deaton

There are no affiliations available

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