Paul A. Samuelson's epic of modern economics, Economics: As Introductory Analysis, may be replaced next year as the principal text in Economics 1 after 15 years of continuous use.
A new series of nine paperbacks, entitled Principles of Modern Economics, written largely by Harvard economists and edited by Otto Eckstein, professor of Economics, is being prepared for use in introductory courses. Eight of the books should be ready by next September, according to Eckstein.
The only books in the series now in print, Economic Development, by Richard T. Gill, Master of Leverett House and head of Ec 1, and International Economics by Peter B. Kenen of Columbia University, will be on the Ec 1 reading list this spring.
"A final decision on how the series as a whole will be used will be made by a special reading list committee after more of the books have appeared," Gill said last night. "It is unlikely, however, that Samuelson's text will be abandoned completely."
Ec 1 to Get Best
Gill listed flexibility and expertise as the chief advantage of the new series. Since each book is logically independent of the others, they "should fit in well with our current practice of picking and choosing the best from many books," Gill observed. He felt the series was preferable to a single text in that the books were written by specialists in each field.
Harvard economists contributing to the project include Richard P. Caves on industrial organization, Robert Dorfman on price theory, John T. Dunlop on labor, James S. Dussenberry on money and credit, Eckstein on public finance, and Gill.
Samuelson's text was first published in 1948. Since then it has gone through five editions and over one million copies. A new edition is planned for this spring.