The Methodology of Empirical Macroeconomics
The Methodology of Empirical Macroeconomics stakes out a pragmatic middle-ground between traditional, prescriptive economic methodology and recent descriptive (sociological or rhetorical) methodology. The former is sometimes seen as arrogantly telling economists how to do their work and the latter as irrelevant to their practice. The lectures are built around a case study of a concrete example of macroeconomic analysis. They demonstrate that economic methodology and the philosophy of science offer insights that help to resolve the genuine concerns of macroeconomists. Some examples of questions addressed include: What is the relationship between theoretical models and empirical observations? What is the relevance of macroeconomics to policy? Should macroeconomics be viewed as a special case of microeconomics? What is the place of long-standing philosophical issues in macroeconomics, such as the scope and nature of economic laws, the role of idealizations, methodological individualism, and the problem of causality?
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account of causality agents aggregation analysis aspirin assumptions ball behavior beliefs Blaug's business cycle Cambridge Cartwright causal structure ceteris paribus classical macroeconomics constant conjunction context correlation corresponds covering-law econometrics economics economists equations equilibrium example explanation facie cause fact Figure Finn Kydland formal Friedman gas laws Granger-causality Hume Hume's idea idealized implications interpretive community IS/LM model Kuhn Kuhn's Kydland and Prescott Lakatos lectures logical logical positivism Lucas Lucas critique macro macroeconomic models macroeconomist methodological individualism methodology micro microfoundations Modigliani-Miller theorem molecules Nancy Cartwright necessary connection neopragmatism nomics nomological machines notion observed paradigm parameters particular Peirce philosophical philosophy of science physics Pissarides Pissarides's model Popper practice pragmatism Prescott's probabilistic account probability problem question Quine Quine-Duhem thesis real-business-cycle modelers relationship relevant representative-agent model robust scientific research programs secondary factors sense theoretical theory things tion truth unemployment University utility functions vacancies variables Weintraub