Can the Capability Approach be Evaluated within the Frame of Mainstream Economics? A Methodological Analysis

Cakmak H. K.

PANOECONOMICUS, vol.57, no.1, pp.85-99, 2010 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 57 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Doi Number: 10.2298/pan1001085k
  • Journal Name: PANOECONOMICUS
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.85-99
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: No


The aim of this article is to examine the capability approach of Amartya Sen and mainstream economic theory in terms of their epistemological, methodological and philosophical/cultural aspects. The reason for undertaking this analysis is the belief that Sen's capability approach, contrary to some economists' claim, is uncongenial to mainstream economic views on epistemology and methodology (not on ontologically). However, while some social scientists regard that Sen, on the whole, is a mainstream economist, his own approach strongly criticizes both the theory and practice of mainstream economics.