Re: Real Science (was Re: serious)

From: William Hamilton <>
Date: Sat Jan 10 2004 - 09:38:34 EST

Just a minor quibble here. I think the problem with economics is one of
instrumentation/measurement. Don Paarlberg, who was head of economics
at Purdue for many years used to say that economics was the study of
what happens, "other things being equal. Of course other things are
never equal." Even if you have a sound mathematical economic theory it
would be extremely difficult, if not impossible (oh for heaven sake.
Impossible) to validate it, because of the difficulty of measuring all
the factors that influence economic decisions.

On Friday, January 9, 2004, at 07:20 PM, Alexanian, Moorad wrote:

> To the extent that economics can be based solely on mathematical
> concepts, then to that extent economics is a science very much like
> game theory or any other mathematical modeling. Of course, if notions
> that cannot be characterized operationally either mathematically or by
> physical instrumentation are invoked, then to that extent economics
> ceases to be a science like, say, physics.
Bill Hamilton Rochester, MI 248 652 4148
Received on Sat Jan 10 09:36:23 2004

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