Economic Policy Papers N° 33: Macroeconomics, Economists and the Crisis

Autor: José De Gregorio


The current global recession has cast doubts about the work of macroeconomists, the usefulness of their theories and their capacity to anticipate and deal with crises. This paper discusses that, while incapable of dealing with all the complexities of the real world, models do help to interpret the economic reality and propose economic policy recommendations. It also claims that, although crises are unpredictable, it is necessary to continue searching for early warnings and policies to try to prevent them and mitigate their propagation and amplification. Finally, it emphasizes that, although the initial shock of the current crisis was similar to the one of the Great Depression, its subsequent development has been essentially different, in particular in emerging economies. This proves that the economies are much stronger, and the policies applied have gone in the proper direction, which has benefited from important practical lessons and advances in economic research.