The Inexact and Separate Science of Economics

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Cambridge University Press, Jan 31, 1992 - Business & Economics - 372 pages
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This book offers a comprehensive overview of the structure, strategy and methods of assessment of orthodox theoretical economics.
 

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Contents

Rationality and utility theory
13
12 Ordinal utility functions
17
13 Revealedpreference theory
19
expected utility theory
22
Demand and consumer choice
28
22 The theory of consumer choice
30
23 Market demand and individual demand functions
33
24 The model of a simple consumption system
34
Koopmans restatement of the difficulties
169
Karl Popper and falsificationism in economics
172
102 Logical falsifiability and Poppers solution to the problem of induction
175
103 Falsificationism as a methodology as norms to govern science
180
104 Decisions evidence and scientific method
184
105 Why are economic theories unfalsifiable?
188
Imre Lakatos and economic methodology
192
112 The appraisal of scientific research programs
195

25 Deriving individual demand
37
26 Bootstrapping and evidential weakness
39
The theory of the firm and general equilibrium
42
32 Market supply and the supply function of a firm
44
33 The model of a simple competitive production system
45
34 Deriving a simple competitive firms supply function
46
35 Market equilibrium and supply and demand explanations
48
36 Microeconomic theory
51
37 Microeconomics and general equilibrium theory
53
Equilibrium theory and economic welfare
57
42 Pareto efficiency Pareto improvements and market failures
60
43 The two fundamental theorems of theoretical welfare economics
62
44 Costbenefit analysis
63
45 Arrows theorem and social welfare theory
64
the moral authority of economists
65
Models and theories in economics
70
52 Semantic and predicate views of theories
72
53 Theories and models in economics
78
The structure and strategy of economics
83
62 Research programs
85
63 The structure of economics
88
64 The vision of economics as a separate science
90
65 The strategy of the separate science of economics
95
66 Methodological individualism rational choice and the separate science of economics
97
67 The function of abstract general equilibrium theories
98
Overlapping generations a case study
102
71 The basic model
103
72 Stationary and constant growth cases
105
73 Humpsaving and social welfare
106
74 On the reception and influence of Samuelsons model
109
on the grip of neoclassical modeling
118
Theory assessment
121
Inexactness in economic theory
123
81 What is an inexact science?
125
82 The meaning or truth conditions of qualified laws
133
83 The justification of inexact laws
139
84 The deductive method
142
85 Qualms
149
Methodological revolution
152
91 Terence Hutchison and the initial challenge
153
92 Paul Samuelsons operationalism
156
93 Fritz Machlup and logical empiricism
158
94 Friedmans pragmatic instrumentalism
162
113 Why the methodology of scientific research programs cannot work
196
114 Further comments on induction falsification and verification
200
115 Concluding remarks on Popperian and Lakatosian methodology
202
Economics as an inexact and separate science
205
121 Apparent dogmatism and the weaklink principle
206
122 Why believe equilibrium theory?
209
123 Do economists follow the inexact deductive method?
211
124 Expected utility theory and its anomalies
212
125 The economists deductive method
221
126 The deductive method and the demands of policy
223
127 Conclusion economics as a separate science
224
On dogmatism in economics the case of preference reversals
227
132 Grether and Plods experiments
230
133 Dogmatism and the commitment to economics as a separate science
234
134 Further responses by economists
236
135 Preference reversals and procedure invariance
240
Conclusion
245
Economic methodology
247
142 How to do economics
253
143 Epistemology methodology and the practice of economics
263
Conclusions
270
152 Appraising microeconomics and general equilibrium theory
274
rationality and economic behavior
277
An introduction to philosophy of science
281
A1 Historical and philosophical background
283
realism versus instrumentalism
285
A3 Scientific explanation
288
A4 Laws
292
A5 Causality laws and explanation
294
A6 Scientific theories and models
297
A7 Theory and observation
298
A8 Paradigms and research programs
300
A9 Scientific discovery
301
A10 Testing and assessing scientific theories
302
A11 The problem of induction
312
A12 The problem of demarcation
314
A13 Scientific method
317
A14 Social theory and the unity of science
319
A15 Concluding philosophical remarks
329
Bibliography
330
Index
360
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Page 3 - Economics is the science which studies human behaviour, as a relationship between ends and scarce means which have alternative uses"— Robbins...
Page 2 - The science which traces the laws of such of the phenomena of society as arise from the combined operations of mankind for the production of wealth, in so far as those phenomena are not modified by the pursuit of any other object.

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