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Learning to be CapitalistsEntrepreneurs in Vietnam's Transition Economy$
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Annette Miae Kim

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195369397

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195369397.001.0001

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Social Cognition

Social Cognition

(p.110) 5 Social Cognition
Learning to be Capitalists

Annette Miae Kim (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Insights from cognitive science can help elucidate the processes of major economic and institutional change. Rather than relying on a single, rational agent model to explain new behaviors and institutions, the research findings in this chapter argue for the need for a socially constructed conception of cognition. Building upon recent literature from developmental psychology, cognitive institutionalism, and cognitive sociology, this chapter outlines a social cognition model of how social and power dynamics alter the cognitive processes of agents such as entrepreneurs in times of system-wide changes. Important factors include processes of attention, vicarious learning, and social structure. It also observes that while social, cognitive processes are key to major institutional change, this change is largely absent from international development discourse. This omission is conducive to propagating myths about universal, natural development strategies and helps to explains why economic changes happen so quickly in some places and not others.

Keywords:   cognitive science, developmental psychology, rational agent, institutional change, cognitive institutionalism, entrepreneurs

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