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Definition of Economics by robbins and criticism on his definition

Definition of Economics by robbins and criticism on his definition.

               Robbins after Marshall’s definition of economics give his own definition of economics. Robins claim that my definition is superior that the earlier definition. It does not suffer from any the defect from which earlier definition was suffered. Robbins definition of economics “economic is a science which studies human behavior as a relationship between multiple ends and scare resources which have alternative uses”.

             This definition clearly shows that economic  is a scarcity and choices. To elaborate this definition we explain the following points of the definition.

Definition of Economics by robbins
Definition of Economics by robbins

1. Unlimited Human wants:

          Human wants are unlimited which means that they are never come to an end. When one want is satisfied another arises and so on. All human beings are always after their wants to satisfy them, but they can never satisfy them. They multiply and sub multiply with the passage of time.

 2.Limited Resources:

           The resources available for the satisfaction of limited wants are strictly limited. Therefore a consumer must behave rationally while spending the same resource on unlimited wants.

 3.Alternative use of resources:

          The resources are some, but they can be used alternatively. We can put the resource for the fulfillment of so many of our wants. Suppose a student has RS, 100 with this amount of money the can buy a book or pen and so many of other commodities, he cannot buy all those things for TS 100. This means that he can satisfy one want as an alternative to the rest of the other wants.

4.Wants are different in importance:

           Although human wants are unlimited but they are not equality important. Some of them are more important and some are less important. Therefore a rational consumer should at first satisfy those want are more important over those which are less important.

5.The existence of an economic problem:

            The Robbins economics definition highlights the existence of economic problem. This mean that an economic problem exist when the above tour conditions exist simultaneously i.e. an economic problem exist when human wants are unlimited, they are not say that equally important. Resources are limited and they are used as alternative way. Thus we can say that economic problem is the problem of choice. A so is the problem of scarcity as well. If any one of these four conditions is not present economic problem we not exist.  

Criticism on definition of Economics by Robbins :

1.Economics not a pure science:

           Robbins has raised the status of economics he says that a pure science, But it is a social science. It deals with the behavior of human long. In pure science whatever is stated today will absolutely be true even two centuries later.

          Two molecules of hydrogen and oxygen will always make water. But as far as human behavior is concerned it is concerned it keeps on changing from time to time. More ever, there so laboratory to test the human behavior as physics and chemistry. Thus economics cannot be eaten with pure science.

2.Meaningless definition:

           Sometimes Robbins definitions of Economics prove meaningless. The relation between wants and resources does not clear a resource may become want and want may become a resource. E.g. if a person want to build a shopping plaza is his want (desire) and the resource are the bricks, cement and labor etc. but when its construction is completed and the building is rented, then the same want convert into a resource for earning of wealth.

3. Widened the scope of economics:

           Robbins definition of Economics much widened the scope of economics. This definition complete us to study unsocial activated mankind like smugglers, corrupts people etc, because they also have unlimited was and limited resources. So robins unnecessarily widened the scope of economics.

4.Limited Resource:

         Robbins says the resources of all kind are limited. But in the production sector of the third world countries. We find that human resources in the form of labor are not limited.

5.Not mention man’s welfare:

          Robbins definition of economics  ignore human welfare. But the fact is that we should study all those activities which promote his welfare, and should exclude that activity which does not promote human welfare. E.g. according to robins a society can produce anything which is necessitates satisfying human needs. But there is no justification for the growing of heroin, alcoholic drink are these goods and services which disrupt the whole social setup. Thus a Robbin has separated welfare.

About the author

Salman Qureshi

Salman Qureshi is an Accountant by profession & he loves to write on Commerce & Management Sciences Subject to assist Students. Hope you guys will like his effort.

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