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  1. Joel Anderson (2010). Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness, Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein. Yale University Press, 2008. X + 293 Pages. [Paperback Edition, Penguin, 2009, 320 Pages.]. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 26 (03):369-376.
  2. Alessandro Antonietti (2010). Do Neurobiological Data Help Us to Understand Economic Decisions Better? Journal of Economic Methodology 17 (2):207-218.
    The contribution that neurobiological data provide us to comprehend the psychological aspects of economic decision-making is critically examined. First, different kinds of correspondences between neural events and mental activities are identified. On the basis of the distinctions made, some recent studies are selected, each of which focuses on a different stage of decision-making and employs a different set of neurobiological data. The thorough analysis of each study suggests that neuro-mental correspondences do not have an evidentiary function but rather a heuristic (...)
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  3. Matthieu Ballandonne (2012). New Economics of Science, Economics of Scientific Knowledge and Sociology of Science: The Case of Paul David. Journal of Economic Methodology 19 (4):391-406.
    For a little more than twenty years, the terminology used in the economics of science has changed significantly with the development of expressions such as ?new economics of science? (NES) and ?economics of scientific knowledge? (ESK). This article seeks to shed light on the use of these different terminologies by studying the work of the economist of science Paul David. We aim to use his work as a case study in order to argue for a difference between NES and ESK (...)
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  4. C. Daniel Batson (2010). The Naked Emperor: Seeking a More Plausible Genetic Basis for Psychological Altruism. Economics and Philosophy 26 (2):149-164.
    The adequacy of currently popular accounts of the genetic basis for psychological altruism, including inclusive fitness (kin selection), reciprocal altruism, sociality, and group selection, is questioned. Problems exist both with the evidence cited as supporting these accounts and with the relevance of the accounts to what is being explained. Based on the empathy-altruism hypothesis, a more plausible account is proposed: generalized parental nurturance. It is suggested that four evolutionary developments combined to provide a genetic basis for psychological altruism. First is (...)
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  5. Sacha Bourgeois-Gironde (2010). Is Neuroeconomics Doomed by the Reverse Inference Fallacy? Mind and Society 9 (2):229-249.
    Neuroeconomic studies are liable to fall into the reverse inference fallacy, a form of affirmation of the consequent. More generally neuroeconomics relies on two problematic steps, namely the inference from brain activities to the engagement of cognitive processes in experimental tasks, and the presupposition that such inferred cognitive processes are relevant to economic theorizing. The first step only constitutes the reverse inference fallacy proper and ways to correct it include a better sense of the neural response selectivity of the targeted (...)
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  6. Claire Brossaud & Bernard Reber (2010). Introduction. In Bernard Reber & Claire Brossaud (eds.), Digital Cognitive Technologies: Epistemology and the Knowledge Economy. John Wiley & Sons.
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  7. Peter Carruthers (2002). Human Nature and the Limits of Science, John Dupré. Clarendon Press, 2001, 211 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 18 (2):351-385.
  8. Gisèle Chevalier & Richard Hudson (2001). The Use of Intentional Language in Scientific Articles in Finance. Journal of Economic Methodology 8 (2):203-228.
    Rosenberg claims that economics must use the 'intentional idiom' for its explanatory strategies. We examine whether scientific articles in financial economics do in fact ascribe propositional attitudes to economic agents. We look at articles in the Journal of Finance , volume 54 (1999), where we find a total of 250 502 words in 29 articles. The total number of ascriptions of the intentional states of belief, desire, expectation or preference to economic agents is 137, with 26 of 29 articles making (...)
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  9. Christopher Clarke (2014). Neuroeconomics and Confirmation Theory. Philosophy of Science 81 (2):195-215.
    Neuroeconomics is a research programme founded on the thesis that cognitive and neurobiological data constitute evidence for answering economic questions. I employ confirmation theory in order to reject arguments both for and against neuroeconomics. I also emphasize that some arguments for neuroeconomics will not convince the skeptics because these arguments make a contentious assumption: economics aims for predictions and deep explanations of choices in general. I then argue for neuroeconomics by appealing to a much more restrictive (and thereby skeptic-friendly) characterization (...)
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  10. John B. Davis (2007). Economic Theory and Cognitive Science, by Don Ross. MIT Press, 2005, 384 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 23 (2):245-252.
  11. Franz Dietrich & Christian List, Reason-Based Rationalization.
    We introduce a “reason-based” way of rationalizing an agent’s choice behaviour, which explains choices by specifying which properties of the options or choice context the agent cares about (the “motivationally salient properties”) and how he or she cares about these properties (the “fundamental preference relation”). Reason-based rationalizations can explain non-classical choice behaviour, including boundedly rational and sophisticated rational behaviour, and predict choices in unobserved contexts, an issue neglected in standard choice theory. We characterize the behavioural implications of different reason-based models (...)
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  12. Philip Faulkner (2002). The Human Agent in Behavioural Finance: A Searlean Perspective. Journal of Economic Methodology 9 (1):31-52.
    According to John Searle's theory of human ontology, intentional mental states such as beliefs and wants rely on non-intentional, Background, dispositions to produce rational behaviour. The distinction between intentional and non-intentional states is used as the basis on which to understand the various conceptions of human agency to be found in behavioural finance. The agent of behavioural finance is characterized in terms of three sets of psychological traits: prospect theory, heuristics and mental accounting. These are examined from a Searlean perspective (...)
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  13. Roberto Fumagalli (2011). On the Neural Enrichment of Economic Models: Tractability, Trade-Offs and Multiple Levels of Description. Biology and Philosophy 26 (5):617-635.
    In the recent literature at the interface between economics, biology and neuroscience, several authors argue that by adopting an interdisciplinary approach to the analysis of decision making, economists will be able to construct predictively and explanatorily superior models. However, most economists remain quite reluctant to import biological or neural insights into their account of choice behaviour. In this paper, I reconstruct and critique one of the main arguments by means of which economists attempt to vindicate their conservative position. Furthermore, I (...)
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  14. Roberto Fumagalli (2010). The Disunity of Neuroeconomics: A Methodological Appraisal. Journal of Economic Methodology 17 (2):119-131.
    The recent advancements at the interface between economics and neuroscience have encouraged neuroeconomists to raise several criticisms concerning the economic theory of choice. At present, however, there is little agreement with regard to the theoretical presuppositions and the explanatory aims of neuroeconomics. In this paper, I assess the scope and the significance of neuroeconomists' divergences, casting doubt on their attempts to provide a unified theoretical framework for analysing human choice behaviour. Moreover, I highlight some respects in which methodologically informed considerations (...)
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  15. Herbert Gintis (2007). A Framework for the Unification of the Behavioral Sciences. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 30 (1):1-16.
    The various behavioral disciplines model human behavior in distinct and incompatible ways. Yet, recent theoretical and empirical developments have created the conditions for rendering coherent the areas of overlap of the various behavioral disciplines. The analytical tools deployed in this task incorporate core principles from several behavioral disciplines. The proposed framework recognizes evolutionary theory, covering both genetic and cultural evolution, as the integrating principle of behavioral science. Moreover, if decision theory and game theory are broadened to encompass other-regarding preferences, they (...)
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  16. M. Godman, M. Nagatsu & M. Salmela (2014). The Social Motivation Hypothesis for Prosocial Behavior. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 44 (5):563-587.
    Existing economic models of prosociality have been rather silent in terms of proximate psychological mechanisms. We nevertheless identify the psychologically most informed accounts and offer a critical discussion of their hypotheses for the proximate psychological explanations. Based on convergent evidence from several fields of research, we argue that there nevertheless is a more plausible alternative proximate account available: the social motivation hypothesis. The hypothesis represents a more basic explanation of the appeal of prosocial behavior, which is in terms of anticipated (...)
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  17. Natalie Gold & Christian List (2004). Framing as Path Dependence. Economics and Philosophy 20 (2):253-277.
    A framing effect occurs when an agent's choices are not invariant under changes in the way a decision problem is presented, e.g. changes in the way options are described (violation of description invariance) or preferences are elicited (violation of procedure invariance). Here we identify those rationality violations that underlie framing effects. We attribute to the agent a sequential decision process in which a “target” proposition and several “background” propositions are considered. We suggest that the agent exhibits a framing effect if (...)
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  18. Robert S. Goldfarb (1997). Now You See It, Now You Don't: Emerging Contrary Results in Economics. Journal of Economic Methodology 4 (2):221-244.
    Abstract A number of empirical literatures in economics display the following pattern of results. First, evidence accumulates to support an empirical result. As time passes, however, contrary results emerge that challenge that initial result. This phenomenon raises important issues about (i) what part empirical findings play in how economists come to believe things; and (ii) how believable inferences are to be made from literatures displaying such contrary results. This paper documents this ?emerging contrary result? phenomenon, and investigates the factors causing (...)
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  19. Francesco Guala (2011). Theory-Centrism in Experimental Economics. Journal of Economic Methodology 18 (01):83-86.
  20. Francesco Guala & Tim Hodgson (2010). The Philosopher in the Scanner (Or: How Can Neuroscience Contribute to Social Philosophy?). Journal of Economic Methodology 17 (2):147-157.
    Analytical philosophy has been challenged by experimental approaches that make use of, among other things, cognitive science methods. In this paper we illustrate the benefits of merging philosophy with neuroscience, using an example of research in the foundations of social science. We argue that designing novel experiments to answer specific philosophical questions has several advantages compared to relying passively on neuroscientists' data. In this particular case, the data redirect attention towards topics ? such as inductive reasoning ? that are relatively (...)
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  21. Sven Ove Hansson (1999). The Dynamics of Norms, Christina Bicchieri, Richard Jeffrey, and Brain Skyrms (Eds.). Cambridge University Press, 1997, 222 + X Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 15 (02):307-.
  22. Shaun P. Hargreaves Heap (2011). What Are Animal Spirits? Rationality and Explanation in Economics. Journal of Economic Methodology 18 (3):297-301.
  23. William Harms (1998). Explaining Culture: A Naturalistic Approach, Dan Sperber. Blackwell Publishers, 1996, Vii + 175 Pages. [REVIEW] Economics and Philosophy 14 (01):177-.
  24. Glenn W. Harrison (2008). Neuroeconomics: A Rejoinder. Economics and Philosophy 24 (3):533-544.
  25. Glenn Harrison & Don Ross (2010). The Methodologies of Neuroeconomics. Journal of Economic Methodology 17 (2):185-196.
    We critically review the methodological practices of two research programs which are jointly called ?neuroeconomics?. We defend the first of these, termed ?neurocellular economics? (NE) by Ross (2008), from an attack on its relevance by Gul and Pesendorfer (2008) (GP). This attack arbitrarily singles out some but not all processing variables as unimportant to economics, is insensitive to the realities of empirical theory testing, and ignores the central importance to economics of ?ecological rationality? (Smith 2007). GP ironically share this (...)
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  26. Joseph Henrich, Robert Boyd, Samuel Bowles, Colin Camerer, Ernst Fehr, Herbert Gintis, Richard McElreath, Michael Alvard, Abigail Barr, Jean Ensminger, Natalie Smith Henrich, Kim Hill, Francisco Gil-White, Michael Gurven, Frank W. Marlowe & John Q. Patton (2005). “Economic Man” in Cross-Cultural Perspective: Behavioral Experiments in 15 Small-Scale Societies. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 28 (6):795-815.
    Researchers from across the social sciences have found consistent deviations from the predictions of the canonical model of self-interest in hundreds of experiments from around the world. This research, however, cannot determine whether the uniformity results from universal patterns of human behavior or from the limited cultural variation available among the university students used in virtually all prior experimental work. To address this, we undertook a cross-cultural study of behavior in ultimatum, public goods, and dictator games in a range of (...)
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  27. Marek Hudík (2011). Why Economics is Not a Science of Behaviour. Journal of Economic Methodology 18 (2):147-162.
    The paper criticises psychologism, i.e. the idea that economics is a science of behaviour or that it must be rooted in such a science. The argument is based on Hayek and Popper's thesis that economics studies spontaneous order. First, it is argued that if economics is to retain its traditional distance from psychology, it has to abandon the notion that it is concerned with behaviour. Then it is shown that there is no simple one-way causation from the psychological to the (...)
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  28. Jaakko Kuorikoski & Petri Ylikoski (2010). Explanatory Relevance Across Disciplinary Boundaries: The Case of Neuroeconomics. Journal of Economic Methodology 17 (2):219–228.
    Many of the arguments for neuroeconomics rely on mistaken assumptions about criteria of explanatory relevance across disciplinary boundaries and fail to distinguish between evidential and explanatory relevance. Building on recent philosophical work on mechanistic research programmes and the contrastive counterfactual theory of explanation, we argue that explaining an explanatory presupposition or providing a lower-level explanation does not necessarily constitute explanatory improvement. Neuroscientific findings have explanatory relevance only when they inform a causal and explanatory account of the psychology of human decision-making.
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  29. Christian List (2003). Are Interpersonal Comparisons of Utility Indeterminate? Erkenntnis 58 (2):229 - 260.
    On the orthodox view in economics, interpersonal comparisons of utilityare not empirically meaningful, and ``hence'' impossible. To reassess this view, this paper draws onthe parallels between the problem of interpersonal comparisons of utility and the problem of translation of linguisticmeaning, as explored by Quine. I discuss several cases of what the empirical evidence for interpersonal comparisonsof utility might be and show that, even on the strongest of these, interpersonal comparisons are empiricallyunderdetermined and, if we also deny any appropriate truth of (...)
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  30. Michiru Nagatsu (2013). The Limits of Unification for Theory Appraisal: A Case of Economics and Psychology. Synthese 190 (2):2267-2289.
    In this paper I examine Don Ross’s application of unificationism as a methodological criterion of theory appraisal in economics and cognitive science. Against Ross’s critique that explanations of the preference reversal phenomenon by the ‘heuristics and biases’ programme is ad hoc or ‘Ptolemaic’, I argue that the compatibility hypothesis, one of the explanations offerd by this programme, is theoretically and empirically well-motivated. A careful examination of this hypothesis suggests several strengths of a procedural approach to modelling cognitive processes underlying individual (...)
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  31. Don Ross, The Economic Agent: Not Human, but Important.
    Critics of mainstream economics typically rest important weight on the differences between people and the 'agents' that populate economic theory and economic models. Hollis and Nell (1975) is both representative of and ancestral to many more recent variations on the theme. Lately, the upgraded status of behavioral economics (BE) within the discipline's mainstream has encouraged a number of writers to use revolutionary rhetoric in promotion of a 'paradigm shift' that includes the rejection of 'rational economic man' (Ormerod 1994, Heilbroner and (...)
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  32. Don Ross, Economics, Cognitive Science and Social Cognition.
    I discuss the role of economics in the study of social cognition. A currently popular view is that microeconomics should collapse into psychology partly because cognitive science has shown that valuation is constitutively social, whereas non-psychological economics insists that it is not. In the paper I resist this view, partly by reference to the relevant history of economic theory, and partly by reference to an alternative model of the way in which that theory complements, without reducing to, psychological accounts of (...)
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  33. Don Ross, Integrating the Dynamics of Multi-Level Economic Agency.
    Three recent book-length studies in the philosophy of economics (Mirowski 2002, Davis 2003, Ross 2005) have drawn attention to the fact that mainstream economic theory has consistently avoided commitment to any particular model of the person. This is the most significant respect in which economics has kept aloof from part of psychology. The widespread belief, on the other hand, that economists’ attentiveness to the psychology of choice and decision had to wait for the Allais challenge and then for Kahneman and (...)
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  34. Don Ross, Robbins, Positivism and the Demarcation of Economics From Psychology.
    This paper argues that the most common reading of Robbins’s Essay on the Nature and Significance of Economic Science in the methodology literature, according to which it was an historical foil for subsequent positivist-empiricist ideas, underestimates its contemporary relevance. In light of recent scholarship on 1930s positivism in philosophy, Robbins’s Essay is better interpreted as representing an attitude I call ‘broad positivism’, which remains a live option in contemporary philosophy of science. In consequence, the basis of Robbins’s preference for clear (...)
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