Deviations Between Earnings and Marginal Productivity: Two Studies Compared

  • Jan Tinbergen
Part of the Recent Economic Thought book series (RETH, volume 1)


In line with alternative interpretations of a number of variables used in economic science, a number of alternative interpretations of functions used in economics may be distinguished. In this essay we concentrate on production functions (see Samuelson 1947, Chap. 4). The alternatives that will enter our argument are actual or ex post versus expected or intended (or planned)—all of them are entitled to the characterization ex ante. As a rule an expected production function reflects a more passive observation, while an intended or planned production function reflects a more active involvement. Active involvement occurs when a production process is set up deliberately, just as in the theory of markets we speak of price setters for a variable such as price.


Production Function National Income Marginal Productivity Semifinished Product Residual Income 
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© Kluwer • Nijhoff Publishing 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan Tinbergen

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