Document Type

Article

Rights

Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence

Disciplines

5.2 ECONOMICS AND BUSINESS

Publication Details

Authors' accepted version.

Published version: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17447143.2016.1218889

Abstract

Few would doubt that economists have taken a prominent role as experts on policy issues [Maesse, J. 2015. Economic experts: A discursive political economy of economics. Journal of Multicultural Discourses 10, no.3: 279–305] and some contend that no other social science discipline has gained such prominence [Fourcade, M., E. Ollion, and Y. Algan. 2015. The superiority of economists. Journal of Economic Perspectives 29, no.1: 89–114]. This prominent societal role has long been evident and leans on their perceived objectivity with regard to the economy and policy advice. Yet, the Great Recession of 2008 put past understandings of the economy, and public confidence in economists, under significant strain [Colander, D., M. Goldberg, A. Haas, K. Juselius, T. Lux, and B. Sloth. 2009. The financial crisis and the systemic failure of the economics profession. Critical Review 21, no.2–3: 249–267]. Faced with this challenge of public confidence, the question of how economics experts, whose expertise on the economy was so dominant before the crisis, maintain their legitimacy in the face of this crisis is of interest. This paper draws on the work of Van Leeuwen [2007. Legitimation in discourse and communication. Discourse & Communication 1, no.1: 91–112] to analyse the legitimising strategies used by economics experts during radio interviews, and echoes the work of Maesse [2015. Economic experts: A discursive political economy of economics. Journal of Multicultural Discourses 10, no.3: 279–305] in arguing that economists benefit from the legitimacy of their profession that has been created in academia, but also acknowledging that economists still have to work for societal legitimacy.

DOI

https://doi.org/10.1080/17447143.2016.1218889


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