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BPEA Article

Unfinished Business in the Macroeconomics of Low Inflation: A Tribute to George and Bill by Bill and George

George A. Akerlof and William T. Dickens

Abstract

THE RETIREMENT OF GEORGE Perry and William Brainard as editors of
the Brookings Papers gives us an opportunity to say publicly what we
have often said privately: the Brookings Papers is an important national
institution. It is important because it has set the right tone for U.S. macroeconomic
policy. George and Bill are both Keynesians, not just in the narrow
tradition of IS-LM models with Phillips curves, but also in their
broader methodological approach to macroeconomics. The Brookings
Papers has always reflected their view that macroeconomics should be a
pragmatic and judicious mixture of theory and common sense, informed
by statistical analysis. That of course reflects the methodology of Keynes,
throughout his life and especially in The General Theory. We think that
U.S. macroeconomic policy has benefited enormously from such a balanced
pragmatic-empirical approach.

Authors