A note on fundamental theory and idealizations in economics and physics

Modern economics, with its use of advanced mathematical methods, is often looked upon as the physics of the social sciences. It is here argued that deductive analyses are more important in economics than in physics, because the economists more seldom can confirm phenomenological laws directly. The economist has to use assumptions from fundamental theory when trying to bridge the gap between observations and phenomenological laws. Partly as a result of the difficulties of establishing phenomenological laws, analyses of idealized 'model-economies' play a more important, but mainly heuristic role, in economics
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DOI 10.1093/bjps/44.3.493
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Igor Hanzel (2008). Idealizations and Concretizations in Laws and Explanations in Physics. Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 39 (2):273 - 301.

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