Institutionalizing a Pluralistic Alliance between Economics and Engineering


  • Sergio Mariotti Politecnico di Milano, Italy



Economics-engineering nexus, Heterodoxy, Pluralism, Scientific platform, Unification of knowledge


Economics and engineering have often intertwined, through the sharing of mathematical modeling tools, analogies and the migration of concepts. These processes have contributed to bridging the epistemological gap between the two disciplines and above all they have fueled a contamination that has allowed the advancement of knowledge. However, this exchange has long entered a phase of diminishing returns and is now not sufficient to respond to the growing complexity that is required of science and its methodologies to interpret the real world, increasingly integrated in all its aspects and influenced by clusters of pervasive innovation and technological progress. This urges the establishment of a new "pluralistic alliance" between the different semi-autonomous branches of the two disciplines, to be realized on a scientific platform, understood as a socio-epistemic space that allows for the meeting between scholars aimed at achieving common or similar scientific goals. The article discusses how to institutionalize this platform and highlights the largely incipient state and difficulties that stand in the way of its legitimacy.

Author Biography

Sergio Mariotti, Politecnico di Milano, Italy

Sergio Mariotti is a Professor Emeritus of Industrial Economics and Policy at Politecnico di Milano. His research interests cover the economics of innovation, the economics of multinational enterprises and global networks, and the economics of industrial and institutional dynamics. He has published in international journals such as Economic Geography, Global Strategy Journal, Industrial and Corporate Change, International Business Review, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, Journal of Economic Geography, Journal of European Public Policy, Journal of International Business Studies, Regional Studies, Research Policy, Strategic Management Journal, among others. He is the Honorary Editor of the Journal of Industrial and Business Economics.

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