Graduate studies at Western
Journal of Economic Methodology 18 (4):409-426 (2011)
|Abstract||Hutchison's 1938 essay has been variously interpreted as introducing positivism, ultra-empiricism and Popperian falsificationism to economics. Yet his apparent inconsistency in maintaining all of these positions seems to have gone unnoticed in the literature. Previously I have criticized attempts to characterize Hutchison as a positivist or ultra-empiricist. In this article I argue that Klappholz and Agassi failed to support their claim that Hutchison introduced Popper's criterion to economics. That is, this paper deals with this specific question, rather than the wider one of whether or not Hutchison introduced Popperian falsificationism to economics. Yet the two issues are closely connected and so the latter question is briefly discussed. To the extent that the paper succeeds, it may help to resolve the inconsistency problem. For now it is possible that Hutchison in 1938 developed his own original and consistent position. The task of substantiating such a view by providing a positive account of his methodology is one for the future.|
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