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  1. added 2020-07-09
    What Experimental Economics Teaches Us About Models. [REVIEW]Anna Alexandrova - 2008 - Journal of Economic Methodology 15:197-204.
  2. added 2020-06-28
    Ricardo, David.Sergio Volodia Marcello Cremaschi & Pier Luigi Porta - 2006 - In Enciclopedia filosofica. Milano, Italy: Bompiani. pp. 9690-9692..
    A reconstruction of the philosophical, religious and political background of Ricardo's work as an economist.
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  3. added 2020-06-18
    Homo economicus.Sergio Volodia Marcello Cremaschi - 2006 - In Enciclopedia filosofica. Milano, Italy: Bompiani. pp. 5339-5341..
    A reconstruction of the genesis and transformations of the idea of 'economic man'.
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  4. added 2020-04-22
    La riproduzione come fine ultimo degli organismi viventi: Genealogia di un paradigma economico.Davide Serpico, Luca Costa & Davide Rasino - 2014 - Naturalmente 27 (3):4-10.
    Mostrando le analogie tra il modello di Homo oeconomicus e quello che chiameremo Animal oeconomicum, nonché la genealogia del ragionamento “economico” applicato al comportamento animale, vengono messi in risalto gli impliciti e le debolezze di alcuni ragionamenti etologici frequenti; revisioni e critiche che hanno ridimensionato il concetto di Homo oeconomicus sono applicabili anche all’interpretazione raziocinante e calcolatrice del comportamento animale.
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  5. added 2019-12-26
    The Unitarian Connection and Ricardo's Scientific Style.Sergio Volodia Marcello Cremaschi & Marcelo Dascal - 2002 - History of Political Economy 34 (2):505-508.
    We reply to Philippe Depoortère’s paper “On Ricardo’s method: The Unitarian influence examined. Some comments on Cremaschi and Dascal’s article ‘Malthus and Ricardo on Economic Methodology’”. Depoortère asks two questions: (1) was Ricardo’s ‘conversion’ to Unitarianism sincere? (2) did Ricardo follow the methodologies of Priestley and Belsham? His answers are that he was a ‘religious skeptic’ and he was not an ‘empiricist’ like Priestley and Belsham. We reply that the sincerity of Ricardo’s religious beliefs is irrelevant since we start with (...)
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  6. added 2019-06-14
    Explanatory Value in Context: The Curious Case of Hotelling’s Location Model.Emrah Aydinonat & Emin Köksal - 2019 - European Journal of the History of Economic Thought 26 (5):1-32.
    There is a striking contrast between the significance of Harold Hotelling’s contribution to industrial economics and the fact that his location model was invalid, unrealistic and non-robust. It is difficult to make sense of the explanatory value of Hotelling’s model based on philosophical accounts that emphasize logical validity, representational adequacy, and robustness as determinants of explanatory value. However, these accounts are misleading because they overlook the context within which the explanatory value added of a model is apprehensible. We present Hotelling’s (...)
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  7. added 2019-06-06
    Idealization and the Aims of Economics: Three Cheers for Instrumentalism: Julian Reiss.Julian Reiss - 2012 - Economics and Philosophy 28 (3):363-383.
    This paper aims to provide characterizations of realism and instrumentalism that are philosophically interesting and applicable to economics; and to defend instrumentalism against realism as a methodological stance in economics. Starting point is the observation that ‘all models are false’, which, or so I argue, is difficult to square with the realist's aim of truth, even if the latter is understood as ‘partial’ or ‘approximate’. The three cheers in favour of instrumentalism are: Once we have usefulness, truth is redundant. There (...)
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  8. added 2019-06-06
    An ‘Inexact’ Philosophy of Economics?: Roger E. Backhouse.Roger E. Backhouse - 1997 - Economics and Philosophy 13 (1):25-37.
    The Inexact and Separate Science of Economics represents the most ambitious attempt to provide a systematic account of economic methodology since the first edition of Blaug's The Methodology of Economics. As such, it has been the subject of extensive critical commentary. For all the attention it has received, however, some important aspects of the book's thesis have not been developed properly. Two important ones are what might be called, following the terminology used in the experimental economics literature, the ‘framing effect’ (...)
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  9. added 2019-02-19
    A Puzzle About Economic Explanation: Examining the Cournot and Bertrand Models of Duopoly Competition.Jonathan Nebel - 2017 - Dissertation, Kansas State University
    Economists use various models to explain why it is that firms are capable of pricing above marginal cost. In this paper, we will examine two of them: the Cournot and Bertrand duopoly models. Economists generally accept both models as good explanations of the phenomenon, but the two models contradict each other in various important ways. The puzzle is that two inconsistent explanations are both regarded as good explanations for the same phenomenon. This becomes especially worrisome when the two models are (...)
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  10. added 2018-03-08
    Popper, Rationality and the Possibility of Social Science.Danny Frederick - 2013 - Theoria : An International Journal for Theory, History and Fundations of Science 28 (1):61-75.
    Social science employs teleological explanations which depend upon the rationality principle, according to which people exhibit instrumental rationality. Popper points out that people also exhibit critical rationality, the tendency to stand back from, and to question or criticise, their views. I explain how our critical rationality impugns the explanatory value of the rationality principle and thereby threatens the very possibility of social science. I discuss the relationship between instrumental and critical rationality and show how we can reconcile our critical rationality (...)
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  11. added 2018-02-02
    10 Truthlikeness and Economic Theories.Ilkka Niiniluoto - 2002 - In Uskali Mäki (ed.), Fact and Fiction in Economics: Models, Realism and Social Construction. Cambridge University Press. pp. 214.
    In a series of carefully argued and stimulating papers on realism, Usakli Maki has pointed out that economic theories typically are unrealistic in two senses: by violating "the-whole-truth" and "nothing-but-the-truth" (Maki 1989, 1992b, 1994b). He suggests that realism in economics can still be rescued by regarding theories as partially true descriptions of essences and as lawlike statements about tendencies. In this chapter, I defend realism by an alternative strategy: idealizational (or "isolational") statements are counterfactual conditional (Niiniluoto 1986), and the concepts (...)
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  12. added 2018-01-08
    The Entanglement Problem and Idealization in Moral Philosophy.Olle Risberg - 2018 - Philosophical Quarterly 68 (272):542-559.
    According to many popular views in normative ethics, meta-ethics and axiology, facts about what we ought to do or what is good for us depend on facts about the attitudes that some agent would have in some relevant idealized circumstances. This paper presents an unrecognized structural problem for such views which threatens to be devastating.
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  13. added 2017-11-13
    Elements of an Evolutionary Theory of Welfare: Assessing Welfare When Preferences Change.Martin Binder - 2010 - Routledge.
    It has always been an important task of economics to assess individual and social welfare. The traditional approach has assumed that the measuring rod for welfare is the satisfaction of the individual’s given and unchanging preferences, but recent work in behavioural economics has called this into question by pointing out the inconsistencies and context-dependencies of human behaviour. When preferences are no longer consistent, we have to ask whether a different measure for individual welfare can, and should, be found. This book (...)
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  14. added 2017-11-13
    Integrity, the Self, and Desire-Based Accounts of the Good.Robert Noggle - 1999 - Philosophical Studies 96 (3):301-328.
    Desire-based theories of well-being claim that a person's well-being consists of the satisfaction of her desires. Many of these theories say that well-being consists of the satisfaction of desires that she would have if her desires were "corrected" in various ways. Some versions of this theory claim that the corrections involve having "full information" or being an "ideal observer." I argue that well-being does not depend on what one would desire if she were an “ideal observer.” Rather, it depends on (...)
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  15. added 2017-01-23
    Justifying Idealization by Abstraction.Sebastian Lutz - manuscript
    I show how omissions lead to robustness and can justify distortions, and I give inferentially relevant explications of abstraction and idealization. Abstraction is explicated as the omission of all and only those claims that use a specific vocabulary; idealization is explicated as the distortion of only those claims that use a specific vocabulary. With these explications, abstraction can justify idealization. As examples of how abstraction justifies idealization and leads to robustness, I discuss Beauchamp and Childress's four principles of biomedical ethics (...)
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  16. added 2016-08-19
    Between Isolations and Constructions: Economic Models as Believable Worlds.Lukasz Hardt - 2016 - Poznan Studies in the Philosophy of the Sciences and the Humanities 106.
    As the title of this essay suggests, my concern is with the issue of what are economic models. However, the goal of the paper is not to offer an in-depth study on multiple approaches to modelling in economics, but rather to overcome the dichotomical divide between conceptualizing models as isolations and constructions. This is done by introducing the idea of economic models as believable worlds, precisely descriptions of mechanisms that refer to the essentials of the modelled targets. In doing so (...)
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  17. added 2016-07-12
    De-Idealization by Commentary: The Case of Financial Valuation Models.Ekaterina Svetlova - 2013 - Synthese 190 (2):321-337.
    Is there a unique way to de-idealize models? If not, how might the possible ways of reducing the distortion between models and reality differ from each other? Based on an empirical case study conducted in financial markets, this paper discusses how a popular valuation model (the Discounted Cash Flow model) idealizes reality and how the market participants de-idealize it in concrete market situations. In contrast to Cartwright's view that economic models are generally over-constrained, this paper suggests that valuation models are (...)
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  18. added 2016-03-18
    Idealization Xiv: Models in Science.Giacomo Borbone & Krzysztof Brzechczyn (eds.) - 2016 - Brill | Rodopi.
    The book "Idealization XIV: Models in Science" offers a detailed ontological, epistemological and historical account of the role of models in scientific practice. The volume contains contributions of different international scholars who developed many aspects of the use of idealizations and models both in the natural and the social sciences. This volume is particularly relevant because it offers original contributions concerning one of the main topic in philosophy of science: the role of models in such branches of the sciences and (...)
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  19. added 2016-03-07
    Against Welfare Subjectivism.Eden Lin - 2017 - Noûs 51 (2):354-377.
    Subjectivism about welfare is the view that something is basically good for you if and only if, and to the extent that, you have the right kind of favorable attitude toward it under the right conditions. I make a presumptive case for the falsity of subjectivism by arguing against nearly every extant version of the view. My arguments share a common theme: theories of welfare should be tested for what they imply about newborn infants. Even if a theory is intended (...)
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  20. added 2016-01-11
    Full Information, Well-Being, and Reasonable Desires.Yonatan Shemmer - 2011 - Utilitas 23 (2):206-227.
    According to Railton: x is good for me iff my Fully Informed Self (FIS) while contemplating my situation would want me to want x. I offer four interpretations of this view. The first three are inadequate. Their inadequacy rests on the following two facts: (a) my FIS cannot want me to want what would be irrational for me to want, (b) when contemplating what is rational for me to want we must specify a particular way in which I could rationally (...)
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  21. added 2015-11-13
    Prisoner's Dilemma Doesn't Explain Much.Robert Northcott & Anna Alexandrova - 2015 - In Martin Peterson (ed.), The Prisoner’s Dilemma. Classic philosophical arguments. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 64-84.
    We make the case that the Prisoner’s Dilemma, notwithstanding its fame and the quantity of intellectual resources devoted to it, has largely failed to explain any phenomena of social scientific or biological interest. In the heart of the paper we examine in detail a famous purported example of Prisoner’s Dilemma empirical success, namely Axelrod’s analysis of WWI trench warfare, and argue that this success is greatly overstated. Further, we explain why this negative verdict is likely true generally and not just (...)
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  22. added 2015-11-13
    Progress in Economics: Lessons From the Spectrum Auctions.Anna Alexandrova & Robert Northcott - 2009 - In Harold Kincaid & Don Ross (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Economics. Oxford University Press. pp. 306--337.
    The 1994 US spectrum auction is now a paradigmatic case of the successful use of microeconomic theory for policy-making. We use a detailed analysis of it to review standard accounts in philosophy of science of how idealized models are connected to messy reality. We show that in order to understand what made the design of the spectrum auction successful, a new such account is required, and we present it here. Of especial interest is the light this sheds on the issue (...)
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  23. added 2015-09-22
    Preferences and Positivist Methodology in Economics.Christopher Clarke - 2016 - Philosophy of Science 83 (2):192-212.
    I distinguish several doctrines that economic methodologists have found attractive, all of which have a positivist flavour. One of these is the doctrine that preference assignments in economics are just shorthand descriptions of agents' choice behaviour. Although most of these doctrines are problematic, the latter doctrine about preference assignments is a respectable one, I argue. It doesn't entail any of the problematic doctrines, and indeed it is warranted independently of them.
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  24. added 2015-09-10
    Realism, Commonsensibles, and Economics:The Case of Contemporary Revealed Preference Theory.D. Wade Hands - 2012 - In Aki Lehtinen, Jaakko Kuorikoski & Petri Ylikoski (eds.), Economics for Real: Uskali Mäki and the Place of Truth in Economics. Routledge. pp. 156-178.
    This paper challenges Mäki's argument about commonsensibles by offering a case study from contemporary microeconomics – contemporary revealed preference theory (hereafter CRPT) – where terms like "preference," "utility," and to some extent "choice," are radical departures from the common sense meanings of these terms. Although the argument challenges the claim that economics is inhabited solely by commonsensibles, it is not inconsistent with such folk notions being common in economic theory.
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  25. added 2015-09-10
    The Structuralist View of Economic Theories: A Review Essay: The Case of General Equilibrium in Particular.D. Wade Hands - 1985 - Economics and Philosophy 1 (2):303-.
  26. added 2015-03-22
    Foundations of Rational Choice Under Risk.Paul Anand - 1993 - Oxford University Press.
  27. added 2015-03-17
    Il normativo nell’homo œconomicus, il normativo dell ’homo œconomicus.Paolo Silvestri - 2008 - In Enzo Di Nuoscio & Paolo Heritier (eds.), Le culture di Babele. Saggi di antropologia filosofico-giuridica. Medusa. pp. 173-192.
  28. added 2015-03-16
    Adjusting the Model to Adjust the World: Constructive Mechanisms in Postwar General Equilibrium Theory.Ivan Boldyrev & Alexey Ushakov - 2016 - Journal of Economic Methodology 23 (1):38-56.
    Economic methodologists most often study the relations between models and reality while focusing on the issues of the model's epistemic relevance in terms of its relation to the ‘real world’ and representing the real world in a model. We complement the discussion by bringing the model's constructive mechanisms or self-implementing technologies in play. By this, we mean the elements of the economic model that are aimed at ‘implementing’ it by envisaging the ways to change the reality in order to bring (...)
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  29. added 2015-01-13
    Pragmatic Hegemony: Questions and Convergence.Brendan Hogan - 2015 - Journal of Speculative Philosophy 29 (1):107-117.
  30. added 2014-09-25
    Soros and Popper: On Fallibility, Reflexivity, and the Unity of Method.Mark Amadeus Notturno - 2013 - Journal of Economic Methodology 20 (4):420-428.
    Let me begin by saying that I think that George Soros is right in identifying fallibility and reflexivity as important phenomena in economic life, and in social life more generally, and as phenomena that mainstream economic theory has largely ignored. I also agree with Soros that economics is an uncertain science. And I think that Soros himself, being one of the world's wealthiest men and most generous philanthropists, deserves credit for being ready and willing to think for himself. It would (...)
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  31. added 2014-09-25
    What Use Is Empirical Confirmation?David Miller - 1996 - Economics and Philosophy 12 (2):197.
    1. Despite the plain fact that there is nothing in this world that can be proved without reliance on some assumption or another, there is an inalienable difference between an argument that begins by assuming what it is designed to establish and one that begins by assuming the contradictory of what it is designed to establish. Arguments of the first kind are uncontroversially acknowledged to be circular, or question-begging; though valid they achieve nothing. Those of the second kind conform to (...)
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  32. added 2014-09-25
    Idealization and Modelling.M. S. Morgan - 1996 - Journal of Economic Methodology 3 (1):131-138.
  33. added 2014-09-18
    Three Kinds of ‘as-If’ Claims.Aki Lehtinen - 2013 - Journal of Economic Methodology 20 (2):184-205.
    As-if locutions are used (a) in order to indicate that an inaccurate or unrealistic assumption is being made because some inaccuracy or unrealisticness is negligible. This kind of claim has two sub-cases. (a1) The as-if locution is used to indicate that the as-if claim in itself is inaccurate and that its inaccuracy does not matter for the purposes of the investigation. (a2) It is used to indicate that claims are made without regard to the causal factors that are assumed to (...)
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  34. added 2014-09-18
    The Cult of Statistical Significance: How the Standard Error Costs Us Jobs, Justice, and Lives.Chee Kian Leong - 2009 - Journal of Economic Methodology 16 (4):431-434.
  35. added 2014-09-18
    The Invisible Hand, Economic Equilibrium in the History of Science, Bruna Ingrao and Giorgio Israel. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1991, 491 Pages. [REVIEW]Robert J. Leonard - 1993 - Economics and Philosophy 9 (1):178.
  36. added 2014-09-17
    On Power as a Unifying Concept in a Naturalistic Foundation of the Social Sciences.Carsten Herrmann-Pillath - manuscript
    Although power is an ubiquitous phenonomen in human societies, the analytical concept of power remains marginal in economics. In this paper I consider a possible radical reorientation of economics which starts out from the methodological premise that economics, the social sciences in general and biology should be integrated into a coherent ontological framework. The conceptual vehicle for achieving such an integration are “bridging concepts” that allow for related empirical interpretations on different ontological domains, and which serve to formulate hypotheses about (...)
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  37. added 2014-09-16
    Introduction to Symposium on the Explanation Paradox.D. Wade Hands - 2013 - Journal of Economic Methodology 20 (3):235 - 236.
  38. added 2014-09-15
    How Fictional Accounts Can Explain.Robert Sugden - 2013 - Journal of Economic Methodology 20 (3):237 - 243.
    In this note, I comment on Julian Reiss's paper ?The explanation paradox?. I argue in support of two of the propositions that make up that paradox (that economic models are false, and that they are explanatory) but challenge the third proposition, that only true accounts can explain. I defend the ?credible worlds? account of models as fictions that are explanatory by virtue of similarity relations with real-world phenomena. I argue that Reiss's objections to the role of subjective similarity judgements in (...)
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  39. added 2014-09-15
    Internal Consistency, Price Rigidity and the Microfoundations of Macroeconomics.Simon Wren-Lewis - 2011 - Journal of Economic Methodology 18 (2):129-146.
    Macromodels based on microfoundations represent the dominant approach in macroeconomics. These models appear to adopt a clear methodological approach, which promotes internal consistency above external consistency as a necessary condition of admissibility. This paper develops two arguments. The first is that internal consistency makes the development of microfounded macromodels dependent on the pace of theoretical innovation. This had led to an internal debate between ?pragmatists? who argue for limited departures from internal consistency, and ?purists? who claim that this would compromise (...)
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  40. added 2014-09-15
    Novelty and the Bounds of Unknowledge in Economics.Ulrich Witt - 2009 - Journal of Economic Methodology 16 (4):361-375.
    Economic development and growth are driven by the emergence of new technologies, new products and services, new institutions, new policies, and so on. Important though it is, the emergence of novelty is not well understood. Epistemological and methodological problems make it a difficult research topic. They imply a ?bound of unknowledge? (Shackle) for economic theorizing wherever novelty occurs in economic life. To make progress, this paper takes stock of the problems. The methodological consequences for causal explanations and the modelling of (...)
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  41. added 2014-09-15
    Walter Bagehot on Economic Methodology: Evolutionism and Realisticnessl.Michel S. Zouboulakis - 1999 - Journal of Economic Methodology 6 (1):79-94.
    Bagehot wrote on the methodology of Ricardian political economy some years after the appearance of marginalism. The purpose of this paper is to examine and evaluate his methodological positions. Bagehot made some significant contributions concerning the nature of economic explanation, the relevance of economic assumptions and the limits of the validity of economic theories. His positions were strongly influenced by social anthropology and Darwinian evolutionism. Bagehot 's originality lies in his evolutionist view of the Ricardian political economy, a view that (...)
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  42. added 2014-09-15
    Towards a Methodology of Tendencies.Piet-Hein van Eeghen - 1996 - Journal of Economic Methodology 3 (2):261-284.
    The paper attempts to think through some aspects of a methodology for tendencies, taking Menger as an important source of inspiration. The contrast between laws and tendencies is emphasized, whereby laws posit necessary connections between cause and effect and refer to historically specific events and tendencies describe loose connections between cause and effect and refer to broad Hayekian patterns of events. Emphasis is placed on the importance of isolating as well as ?patterning? abstraction for the social sciences, which is traced (...)
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  43. added 2014-09-12
    Reply to Julian Reiss.Menno Rol - 2013 - Journal of Economic Methodology 20 (3):244 - 249.
    Julian Reiss finds an insoluble paradox in the claims that economic models are at the same time false, nevertheless explanatory, and that only true explanations explain. But the claim that they are false is itself false. A closer look at what ?truth? may mean is needed.
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  44. added 2014-09-12
    The Explanation Paradox Redux.Julian Reiss - 2013 - Journal of Economic Methodology 20 (3):280 - 292.
    I respond to some challenges raised by my critics. In particular, I argue in favour of six claims. First, against Alexandrova and Northcott, I point out that to deny the explanatoriness of economic models by assuming an ontic (specifically, causal) conception of explanation is to beg the question. Second, against defences of causal realism (by Hausman, Mäki, Rol and Grüne-Yanoff) I point out that they have provided no criterion to distinguish those claims a model makes that can be interpreted realistically (...)
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  45. added 2014-09-12
    The Explanation Paradox.Julian Reiss - 2012 - Journal of Economic Methodology 19 (1):43-62.
    This paper examines mathematical models in economics and observes that three mutually inconsistent hypotheses concerning models and explanation are widely held: (1) economic models are false; (2) economic models are nevertheless explanatory; and (3) only true accounts explain. Commentators have typically resolved the paradox by rejecting either one of these hypotheses. I will argue that none of the proposed resolutions work and conclude that therefore the paradox is genuine and likely to stay.
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  46. added 2014-09-12
    Idealization, Abstraction, and the Policy Relevance of Economic Theories.Menno Rol - 2008 - Journal of Economic Methodology 15 (1):69-97.
    In theories that idealize the object of study, falsity is inserted somehow. However, the actual propositions by which the idealization takes place need not be false at all. An example from physics illustrates that the Ideal Gas Law and Boyle's Law are respective idealizations of the van der Waals Law. The idealizational procedures involved in reasoning from the latter to the former can be repeated at a higher level of abstraction than that of the laws as we know these from (...)
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  47. added 2014-09-12
    A Defence of Absurd Theories in Economics.Ole Røgeberg & Morten Nordberg - 2005 - Journal of Economic Methodology 12 (4):543-562.
    Theories that involve plainly false and even bizarre assumptions could have an important role in bundling empirical facts and allowing these to be understood, handled and used as modules in the construction of mechanisms by economists with human cognitive limits. Absurd theories would be subcomponents used in a valid explanatory strategy as long as the mechanisms only derive the implications of the facts summarised. This provides a defence and explanation of parts of current practise, but also imposes hard limits on (...)
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  48. added 2014-09-11
    Abstraction and Unrealistic Assumptions in Economics∗.Steven Rappaport - 1996 - Journal of Economic Methodology 3 (2):215-236.
    Economics has been persistently criticized for its heavy reliance on unrealistic assumptions. Some people reply to this criticism by saying that the unrealistic assumptions of economics result from abstraction from unimportant details, and abstraction is necessary for knowledge of a complex real world. So, far from unrealistic assumptions detracting from the epistemic worth of economics, such assumptions are essential for economic knowledge. I call this line of argument ?the Abstractionist Defense?. After clarifying abstraction, unrealistic assumptions and kindred notions, I show (...)
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  49. added 2014-09-09
    On a Paradox of Truth, or How Not to Obscure the Issue of Whether Explanatory Models Can Be True.Uskali Mäki - 2013 - Journal of Economic Methodology 20 (3):268 - 279.
    It is argued that Reiss (2012) fails to refute attempts to resolve the paradox of false explanatory models. His article fails to provide an articulate conception of what exactly the presumed paradox is, it suffers from uncontrolled ambiguities and inconsistencies, and it fails to adequately address accounts of economic models that might contribute to reconciling their apparent falsehood and explanatoriness. Some details in my account of how apparently false models may explain are clarified.
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  50. added 2014-09-09
    Playing with Networks: How Economists Explain. [REVIEW]Caterina Marchionni - 2013 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 3 (3):331-352.
    Network theory is applied across the sciences to study phenomena as diverse as the spread of SARS, the topology of the cell, the structure of the Internet and job search behaviour. Underlying the study of networks is graph theory. Whether the graph represents a network of neurons, cells, friends or firms, it displays features that exclusively depend on the mathematical properties of the graph itself. However, the way in which graph theory is implemented to the modelling of networks differs significantly (...)
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