Abstract: Recent critics of unequal exchange have argued that not only does the theory critically depend upon the unrealistic assumption of complete speciali zation (no nonspecific commodities) but also that unequal exchange tends to be self-cancelling and empirically insignificant. Each of these criticisms is examined and found to be lacking. The theory is first extricated from the confusing and ir relevant environment of the labor theory of value and a price-denominated fun damental theorem is stated and proved. Unequal exchange is then generalized to account for nonspecifics in a logically consistent way. Though the fundamental theorem does not hold for nonspecifics, a numerical example in which surplus is transferred shows that any criticism of unequal exchange based on its alleged in ability to handle nonspecifics must be empirical in nature rather than logical. It is next shown that while unequal exchange may indeed disappear in the long run for a variety of reasons, nothing in the theory itself implies that it is necessarily self- cancelling. It is argued that capitalists are not attracted to the periphery by low wages but by high profits which depend upon transportation costs and nontraded goods as much as low wages. Finally a 67-sector model of world trade is intro duced in an attempt to assess the empirical relevance of unequal exchange. It is shown that some 38% of the value of peripheral exports is required to equalize the rate of profit under existing wage differentials.
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Bongard's work focuses on understanding the general nature of cognition, regardless of whether it is found in humans, animals or robots. This unique approach focuses on the role that morphology and evolution plays in cognition. Addressing these questions has taken him into the fields of biology, psychology, engineering and computer science.
Danforth is an applied mathematician interested in modeling a variety of physical, biological, and social phenomenon. He has applied principles of chaos theory to improve weather forecasts as a member of the Mathematics and Climate Research Network, and developed a real-time remote sensor of global happiness using messages from Twitter: the Hedonometer. Danforth co-runs the Computational Story Lab with Peter Dodds, and helps run UVM's reading group on complexity.
Laurent studies the interaction of structure and dynamics. His research involves network theory, statistical physics and nonlinear dynamics along with their applications in epidemiology, ecology, biology, and sociology. Recent projects include comparing complex networks of different nature, the coevolution of human behavior and infectious diseases, understanding the role of forest shape in determining stability of tropical forests, as well as the impact of echo chambers in political discussions.
Hines' work broadly focuses on finding ways to make electric energy more reliable, more affordable, with less environmental impact. Particular topics of interest include understanding the mechanisms by which small problems in the power grid become large blackouts, identifying and mitigating the stresses caused by large amounts of electric vehicle charging, and quantifying the impact of high penetrations of wind/solar on electricity systems.
Bagrow's interests include: Complex Networks (community detection, social modeling and human dynamics, statistical phenomena, graph similarity and isomorphism), Statistical Physics (non-equilibrium methods, phase transitions, percolation, interacting particle systems, spin glasses), and Optimization(glassy techniques such as simulated/quantum annealing, (non-gradient) minimization of noisy objective functions).