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Economic Methodology

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Logical Positivist:
Philosophical movement -Originated in Berlin and Vienna in the 1920's. Dominated the thinking about philosophy of science.
Logical positivist demarcation rule
Accept only analytic and synthetic a posteriori statements as scientifi knowledge
Aim of logical Positivism
demarcate sicentific knowledge and distinguish since from pseudo sience.
Synthetic a Posteriori
When propositions are shown to be true by empirical research
Difference between Synthetic and analytical
Synthetic statements derives from sense perception, and analytical statements are true by definition
Objective of Vienna Circle
a) Clean science from all propositions which are not meaningful. b)Scientific knowledge as directly accessible by sense perception. c)Develop precise definitions of central scientific notions such as theory, explanation, confirmation, etc.
Verifiability principle
A synthetic statement is MEANINGFUL if it can be judged by true or false by sense perception
Context of Discovery and context of justification
a distinction should be drawn between the way a theory is discover and justify which is a rational reconstruction of the theory according to the tenets (anyone developing the theory) of logical positivism.
Operationalism
Concept is synonymous with a set of operations. The problem is that the term will have a different meaning when is measured in a different way.
CARL HEMPEL developed the systematically view of scientific explanation in the
DN:Deductive Nomological model of explanation(Covering -law model)
A DN explanation is a statement of
what is to be explained(explanandum) which is deduced from a set of true statements that includes at least one law(nomos).This set of statements is called the explanans.
David Hume :
Observation can just justify single statements. Problem of induction: how singular claims about unobserved things and generalizations ought to be supported or justified.
Evidential support was
very important for logical positivist. This in turn implies laws should be removed from science.
Instrumentalism
Laws are just instruments which values are not measure whether they are true or false, but measure on how effectively they explain the phenomena. Laws should be evaluated in terms of usefulness.
Confirmationism:
Laws do not express certain knowledge about the world, but express probabilistic knowledge. Probability measure is called sometimes the degree of confirmation of a statement.
Multiple Correlation Analysis
Method for measurement. It did not contribute in terms of either discovery or criticism . If economist theorist does not provide the modelers with a complete set of causal factors, then the measurement of the other causal will be biased.
Ceteris Paribus conditions
Isolate selected set factors from other influences. Latin phrase: "with others the same"
Alan Musgrave made a distinction between different kinds of assumptions:
a) Negligibly: a factor has no detectable effect on the phenomenon under investigation.
b)Domain: an expected factor is absent, and is used to specify the domain of applicability of the theory concerned.
c)Heuristic: an assumption is made if a factor is considered to be negligible in order
According to Friedman's methodology
an important criterion for assessing a theory is its predictability. The more precise the prediction, the better the theory. To achieve more precise predictions, one has to develop more comprehensive models.
Immunizing Strategem
Theories can still be correct despite evidence that are shown to be wrong. Interpreter theory is explained, no as evidence that interpreter's theory is wrong but subject being in state of denial.
For Popper:
science begin with a problem rather than observations. It largely consists in PROBLEM SOLVING. Theory is falsibiable= It is scientific. The more improbable the theory the more scientifically .The more empirical content a theory contains the greater number of ways which it may eventually turn out to be false.
Risky theory
when a theory is incompatible with the empirical observations, it is scientific.
Normal Science
label upon previous scientific achievements. Acknowledged supplying basis for its further practice. Essentially a puzzle solving exercise.
Anomaly
is an observation, experimental result that violates the paradigm expectations that govern the normal science
Crisis and revolution of science
begins with the recognition of an anomaly. In the first instance, anomaly has been considered a puzzle, if the problem cannot be solved immediately. Difficulties are always encountered in solving theory's puzzle. Failure to achieve the solution of a puzzle will usually discredit the scientist rather than the theory.
The transition to a new paradigm
- a paradigm shift- is called scientific revolution. Old paradigm is replace for a new one.
According to Kuhn a scientist is a
Solver of puzzles
GESTALT SWITCH
See different things when looking from the same point in the same direction.
Sophisticated falsificationism
a theory is acceptable or scientific only if it has corroborated excess empirical content over its predecessor. Only if it leads to the discovery of novel facts. Facts that are improbable in existing theory.
Research program has 2 methodological rules:
Negative heuristic: tell us what paths of research to avoid.
Positive heuristic: tell us what paths to pursue.
SSK
Sociology of scientific knowledge: Science can be seen as "social constructive" depends on social interest of social community.
Barnes & Floor formulated 4 methodological principles:
a)Causality:Focus on causal conditions of scientists beliefs. Interest of people and society
b)Impartiality: Be impartial between true or false beliefs
c)Symmetry:The same type of cause explains both true and false beliefs
d)Reflexivity:Assumption on theories, then apply it to your own theory
the Edinburgh Strong Programme
First influential SSK statement. Sociological study of science program that makes radical assertion that all knowledge is socially constructed.
Naturalistic approach:
Scientists are themselves part of a social world, and thus their beliefs and behaviors are to be examined the same way sociologists examine other aspects of social world such as religion, social groups, ethnicity, etc.
Laboratory Studies Approach:
How locations influences the development of theories. Observe workplaces, explained and ethnomethodological approach.
Bruno Latour's Actor Network theory
Science is produced in networks in alliances of human and non human agents.
Relativism
View that truth and knowledge are not objective and unchanging features of the real world.
Realism
View that the world is the way it is independent of human beliefs about its nature. World is there to be "discovered" or "found" through scientists efforts. Status of science in the society is questioned.
Value
Neutrality. Scientists should not allow their own values to influence their scientific work. Value concepts which maye reflect implicit value judgments and policy prescriptions.
Robert K. Merton.conditions as key of scientific values:
universalism,organized skepticism, disinterestedness and communism
Universalism
Truth is evaluated in terms of universal criteria, impersonal. Not based on race, class, gender etc.
Organized skepticism
All ideas must be tested and are subject to rigorous, structured community scrutiny.
Desinterestedness
Scientists are rewarded for acting in ways that outwardly appear to be selfless.
Communism
Scientists give intellectual property rights in exchange for recognition and esteem.
RETHORIC APPROACH
Greeks: Forms and methods of argument and communications(oration and speech-making) . Contemporary: includes the above plus also applies to the practice of science.Dialogue between economist and scientists.
PATHOS(EXPERIENCE)
the appeal to the audience's emotions, sympathies, and imaginations. Persuasion.
LOGOS(WORD)
internal consistency of the message the logic behind its reasons. An opinion.
ETHOS(CHARACTER)
credibility of the writer or speaker. Origin of the words Ethics.
Analogy
persuades by interpreting economic statements in terms more familiar and intuitive forms of language. Example: game theory the prisoner's dilemma"
Metaphor:
"the invisible hand": enhance the understanding of a concept by comparing it to another concept whose source is forgotten or less important.
Postmodernism
eskeptical attitudes towards all claims of absolute truth
Pluralism
Pluralism assumes there are a number of different competing standards
Theorical pluralism: Paul Feyerabend
Different methods of investigation constitute a check on one another, the same conclusion can be arrived in a number of different ways. It give more confidence in that conclusion.
Triangulation
he best way to produce reliable results in science is to come at problems from different points of view, while using different methods and possible data. Different methods of investigation are checks on one on another
VALUE JUDGEMENTS
can refer to a judgment based upon a particular set of values or on a particular value system. Most commonly the term value judgment refers to an individual's opinion.
NORMATIVE
how things should be ought to be, has a value, they are are MODEL, STANDARD, SAMPLE)
POSITIVE
descriptive statements, value-free science with no place for value judgment of any kind.
Methodological value judgments
Involve prescriptions or recommendations about how one ought to carry out economics. They are more "how to do it" rather that ethical or moral value judgements.
Value Ladenness
Associated with the "HUME GUILLOTINE" the idea that statements using "IS" are completely different from those using "ought" language. " Is" content can be thought to be positive and value free.
RATIONAL CHOICE THEORY
sees individuals' choices as rational when their preference satisfy a set of formal conditions that allow us to regard those as "well behaved". It is a value laden in the sense of employing an important value judgments.
Hausman & Mc Pherson
"minimal benevolence" : all things considered or putting aside other considerations, people ought to be able to make themselves better off by satisfying their preference. Ceteris paribus: what is believed to be right.
Altruistic preference
A value on someone else being better off rather than serving one's own personal interests. Concern on the welfare of others. Work in charitable organizations motivated by ethical goals rather than money: Economic explanations must incorporate the fact that people do posses ethical values
Positivism
empiricism. knowledge arises from sense of experience
logicism
all scientific language, including mathematics is an extension of logic.
Synthetic a priori
Universally true
syntactics
deals with formal relations between signs and expressions E.g subject and predicate
semantics
deals with the significance and interpretations of the signs and expressions
law-likes
required unrestricted egeneralizations. We do not know whether they are true laws
Samuelson descriptivism
complete set of hypotheses that stipulate something about observable reality. A valid theory equal to its complete set of empirically valid consequences.
falsifiability
criterion for demarcating science from pseudo science
how deductive testing works?
1) Logical comparison to its conclusions
2) Investigation of logical form of the theorz (empirical o tautologica)
3) Determine whether the theory constitute a scientific advance
4) determine whether predictions were true.When is fase, theory is falsified, and scientist begin his quest for a better theory. Fist a theroy must be abandoned, but a better one can substitute it
probability
the more probable the theory the more reason to accept it.
All revolution crisis are resolved 3 ways
a) normal science is able to handle crisis provoking problem
b) scientists may conclude there is no solution and set aside to be solved by future generations
c) crisis may en with the emergence of a new paradigm
what is the difference between falsification and anomalous observations??
anomalous observations are observations that by leading to crisis prepare the ground for a new theory. Cannot been seen as identical to falsification
Paradigm Disciplinary Matrix
a)Smbolic generations: define some symbols they deploy
b) methaphysical parts of paradigm: determine an explanation of a puzzle
c) values: values are related to predictions. Values are used to judge whole theories
d) paradigm: learn to view problem with the gestalt, and assimilate the way of see it
Research program characteristics
all scientific research programs are caractherized in terms of their hardcore. Protective belt is used around the core with testable theories that can be amended as the program encounters falsifications.
social constructuvism
idea that scientific knowledge is contructed according to social mechanisms and protocols that scientists use.
Paul David's Lock - in effects
characteriyes many scientific innovations where a particular innovation in technology closses off the possibility of others which are ultimately more efficient. E.g QWERTY system.
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