The two papers scheduled for this session were Siro Lombardini’s ‘Market and Institutions’ focused mainly on conceptual and theoretical issues, and Ted Wheelwright and Greg Crough’s ‘The Changing Pacific Rim Economy with Special Reference to Japanese Transnational Corporations: A View from Australia’ which was an exercise in up-to-the-minute economic history. It should be said, however, that the flavour of the discussion of these two papers (and even of the authors’ brief introductory remarks) was influenced by Professor Shigeto Tsuru’s keynote address ‘Economic Institutions or Institutional Economics’ delivered at the opening session and thus fresh in the minds of participants in Session I that afternoon. Three messages from the keynote address recurred in the Session I debate! They were those stressing the need for modern economists — (1) to lay down a stronger and broader basis of empirical work; (2) to recognise and take full analytical account of the normative issues implicit in most economic problems; and (3) to focus on the real-world mixed economy rather than on some abstract or socialist economic system. Moreover, the main thrust of Professor Tsuru’s argument for a conscious revival of the more broadly conceived discipline of political economy (in place of a purely positive economic science) synchronised with the underlying theme running through the Lombardini paper, was implicit in the analytical perspective of Wheelwright and Crough and informed much of the open discussion of Session I.
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