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Jon D. Wisman

Jon Wisman

Professor Department of Economics

Professor Wisman teaching interests are: History of Economic Thought, Methodology, History, Introductory Macroeconomics. His research spans a broad spectrum of domains from history of economic thought and methodology to labor and other social issues.
Languages Spoken

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CAS - Economics
Kreeger - 111
On leave
Contact Info
(202) 885-3158 (Work)

Send email to Jon Wisman

For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.
See Also
AU department of Economics

Partnerships & Affiliations

  • Association for Social Economics

    Former President

  • Editorial Advisory Board of the International Journal of Social Economics, Les Cahiers du GRATICE



Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Research Interests

  •  Methodology, History of Economic Thought, General Economic  History, Workplace Democracy.

Selected Publications

  • “Government is Whose Problem?” Journal of Economic Issues, 47 (4), December 2013 (forthcoming).
  • “Wage Stagnation, Rising Inequality, and the Financial Crisis of 2008,” Cambridge Journal of Economics, 37 (4), July 2013: 921-45.
  • “The Growth Trap, Ecological Devastation, and the Promise of Guaranteed Employment,” Challenge, 56 (2), March/April 2013: 53-78.
  • “Degraded Work, Declining Community, Rising Inequality, and the Transformation of the Protestant Ethic in America: 1870-1930,” American Journal of Economics and Sociology (forthcoming November 2013 with Ph.D. candidate Matthew E. Davis).
  • “9/11, Foreign Threats, Political Legitimacy, and Democratic Social Institutions,” Humanomics (forthcoming).
  • “Rising Job Complexity and the Need for Government Guaranteed Work and Training,” in The Job Guarantee: Toward True Full Employment, Matthew Forstater and Michael Murray, eds. New York: Palgrave, January 2013: 5-38 (with Ph.D. candidate Nicholas Reksten.
  • “Legitimating Inequality:  Fooling Most of the People All of the Time,” American Journal of Economics and Sociology, 70 (4), October 2011: 974-1013 (with James F. Smith).
  • “Inequality, Social Respectability, Political Power, and Environmental Devastation,” Journal of Economic Issues, 45 (4), December 2011: 877-900.
  •  “The Moral Imperative and Social Rationality of Government-Guaranteed Employment and Reskilling,” Review of Social Economy, 68 (1), March 2010: 35-67.
  • “Creative Destruction, Economic Insecurity, Stress, and Epidemic Obesity,” American Journal of Economics and Sociology, 69 (3), July 2010: 963-82 (with Ph.D candidate Kevin W. Capehart).  Reprinted in Insecurity, Inequality, and Obesity in Affluent Societies, Avner Offer, Rachel Pechey, and Stanley Ulijaszek, eds., Oxford University Press/Proceedings of the British Academy, February 2012: 15-53.
  • “Rising Inequality and the Financial Crises of 1929 and 2008,” in Consequences of Economic Downturn.  Edited by Martha Starr.  New York: Palgrave Macmillan, December 2010: 63-82 (With Ph.D. candidate Barton Baker).
  • “On Human Behavior and the Nature of the Workplace,” Looking Beyond the Individualism & Homo Economicus of Neoclassical Economics, Edward O’Boyle, ed., Milwaukee, Wisconsin: Marquette University Press, 2010: 161-76.  Also appearing in NEP Cognitive and Behavioural Economics, 2009-12-05,
  • “Household Saving, Class Identity, and Conspicuous Consumption,” Journal of Economic Issues, 43 (1), March 2009: 89-114.
  • “The Economic Causes of War and Peace,” Encyclopedia of Violence, Peace and Conflict, 2nd Edition, Vol. I, Oxford: Elsevier 2008: 622-34. 


Honors, Awards, and Fellowships

  • Twice recipient of the American University Award for Outstanding Teaching,
  • Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society's Professor of the Year,
  • Winner of the $10,000 Speiser Essay Contest.

Work In Progress

  • The Origins and Dynamics of Inequality: Sex, Politics, and Ideology (Book manuscript).
  • "We All Must Work: Creative Destruction and The Pursuit of Happiness (book project)."
  •  “Creative Destruction, an Ever-widening Generation Gap, and Parental Happiness.” 
  • “The Political Dynamics of Inequality: From Violence and Religion to Secular Ideology”
  • "Adam Smith's Appropriation Theory of Human Behavior Reconsidered."
  •  “On the Evolution of Instrumental Habits of Thought.”
  • “The Magnitude of Kuznets’ Foiled Conjecture: The Revenge of the Rich” (with Aaron Pacitti).
  • “Ending the Crisis with Guaranteed Employment and Retraining” (with Aaron Pacitti)