Economics Imperialism and Solution Concepts in Political Science

Philosophy of the Social Sciences 40 (3):347-374 (2010)
Abstract
Political science and economic science . . . make use of the same language, the same mode of abstraction, the same instruments of thought and the same method of reasoning. (Black 1998, 354) Proponents as well as opponents of economics imperialism agree that imperialism is a matter of unification; providing a unified framework for social scientific analysis. Uskali Mäki distinguishes between derivational and ontological unification and argues that the latter should serve as a constraint for the former. We explore whether, in the case of rational-choice political science, self-interested behavior can be seen as a common causal element and solution concepts as the common derivational element, and whether the former constraints the use of the latter. We find that this is not the case. Instead, what is common to economics and rational-choice political science is a set of research heuristics and a focus on institutions with similar structures and forms of organization
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DOI 10.1177/0048393109341452
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References found in this work BETA
Explanatory Unification.Philip Kitcher - 1981 - Philosophy of Science 48 (4):507-531.
Explanation and Scientific Understanding.Michael Friedman - 1974 - Journal of Philosophy 71 (1):5-19.
Economics Imperialism: Concept and Constraints.Uskali Mäki - 2009 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 39 (3):351-380.
Unrealistic Assumptions in Rational Choice Theory.Aki Lehtinen & Jaakko Kuorikoski - 2007 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 37 (2):115-138.

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Citations of this work BETA
Scientific Imperialism: Difficulties in Definition, Identification, and Assessment.Uskali Mäki - 2013 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 27 (3):325-339.

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