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David Colander

American economist

David C. Colander (born November 16, 1947) is an American economist, and the Christian A. Johnson Distinguished Professor of Economics at Middlebury College.



  • Colander: What’s your view of the New Keynesian approach?
    Tobin: I’m not sure what that means. If it means people like Greg Mankiw, I don’t regard them as Keynesians. I don’t think they have involuntary unemployment or absence of market clearing. It is a misnomer to call Mankiw any form of Keynesian.
    Colander: How about real-business-cycle theorists?
    Tobin: Well, that’s just the enemy.
    • David Colander, "Conversations with James Tobin and Robert J. Shiller on the “Yale Tradition” in Macroeconomics", Macroeconomic Dynamics (1999), later published in Inside the economist’s mind: conversations with eminent economists (2007) edited by Paul A. Samuelson and William A. Barnett.


  • In complexity economics one is not searching out the truth; one is simply searching for a statistical fit that can be temporarily useful in our understanding of the economy.
    • David Colander, Complexity and the History of Economic Thought, Routledge, London and New York, 2000, p. 6.
  • In reading the economics journals and talking with newly-minted PhDs, it is as if Keynesian economics never existed.
    • [David Colander, “Functional Finance, New Classical Economics and Great Great Grandsons” (2002).
  • Keynes is dead; dynamic programming; Keynes is still dead. That’s the way Stanford graduate economics students recently summed up what they had learned in their core graduate macroeconomics course.
    • David Colander, "The Keynesian Method, Complexity, and the Training of Economists" (2009)

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