Commodities, Consumption and Production

  • Robert P. GillesEmail author


This chapter introduces the mathematical foundations for models of economies in which economic wealth is generated through a social division of labour. We introduce the notion of an economic commodity, separating consumables that have use value from intermediary inputs in production processes. All wealth creation processes are performed through consumer-producers, a mathematical representation of a rational decision-maker, who produces as well as consumes economic commodities: consumer-producers form the building blocks of any mathematical theory of the social division of labour. We also consider two mathematical models of the fundamental property of Increasing Returns to Specialisation (IRSpec) in human productive abilities. The chapter concludes with surprising insights from decision-making by consumer-producers in (standard) economic trade environments.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Management SchoolQueen’s University BelfastBelfastUK

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