Monday , January 27 2020
Home / Lars P. Syll / Does it — really — take a model to beat a model?

Does it — really — take a model to beat a model?

Summary:
Does it — really — take a model to beat a model? A critique yours truly sometimes encounters is that as long as I cannot come up with some own alternative model to the failing mainstream models, I shouldn’t expect people to pay attention. This is, however, to totally and utterly misunderstand the role of philosophy and methodology of economics! As John Locke wrote in An Essay Concerning Human Understanding: The Commonwealth of Learning is not at this time without Master-Builders, whose mighty Designs, in advancing the Sciences, will leave lasting Monuments to the Admiration of Posterity; But every one must not hope to be a Boyle, or a Sydenham; and in an Age that produces such Masters, as the Great-Huygenius, and the incomparable Mr. Newton, with some

Topics:
Lars Pålsson Syll considers the following as important:

This could be interesting, too:

Lars Pålsson Syll writes The pretence-of-knowledge syndrome

Lars Pålsson Syll writes Uncertainty in economics

Bill Mitchell writes The Weekend Quiz – January 25-26, 2020 – answers and discussion

peterc writes Productivity, Labor Complexity, and Wage Determination Procedures

Does it — really — take a model to beat a model?

A critique yours truly sometimes encounters is that as long as I cannot come up with some own alternative model to the failing mainstream models, I shouldn’t expect people to pay attention.

This is, however, to totally and utterly misunderstand the role of philosophy and methodology of economics!

As John Locke wrote in An Essay Concerning Human Understanding:

Does it — really — take a model to beat a model?The Commonwealth of Learning is not at this time without Master-Builders, whose mighty Designs, in advancing the Sciences, will leave lasting Monuments to the Admiration of Posterity; But every one must not hope to be a Boyle, or a Sydenham; and in an Age that produces such Masters, as the Great-Huygenius, and the incomparable Mr. Newton, with some other of that Strain; ’tis Ambition enough to be employed as an Under-Labourer in clearing Ground a little, and removing some of the Rubbish, that lies in the way to Knowledge.

That’s what philosophy and methodology can contribute to economics — clearing obstacles to science by clarifying limits and consequences of choosing specific modelling strategies, assumptions, and ontologies.

Does it — really — take a model to beat a model?It takes a model to beat a model has to be one of the stupider things, in a pretty crowded field, to come out of economics. … I don’t get it. If a model is demonstrably wrong, that should surely be sufficient for rejection. I’m thinking of bridge engineers: ‘look I know they keep falling down but I’m gonna keep building em like this until you come up with a better way, OK?’

Jo Michell

Lars Pålsson Syll
Professor at Malmö University. Primary research interest - the philosophy, history and methodology of economics.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *