What would a scientific economics look like?

Linked with Post-autistic economics.

Published on post-autistic economics network PAECON, by Peter Dorman, Evergreen State College, USA, RER, issue no. 47 /fall 2008, Copyright: Peter Dorman, 2008, 7 pages.


Sciences are loosely characterized by an agenda to describe the mechanisms by which observable outcomes are brought about and the privileging of propositions that have been demonstrated to have negligible risk of Type I error.

Economics, despite its pretensions, does neither of these and should not be regarded as scientific in its current form. Its subject matter, however, is no more recalcitrant to scientific procedures than that of many other fields, like geology and biology. The benefit of bringing economics into greater conformity with other sciences in its content and method would be twofold: we would be spared the embarrassment of unfounded dogma, and over time economics could assemble an ever larger body of knowledge capable of being accepted at a high level of confidence.

A scientific economics would take Type I error far more seriously, would study mechanisms rather than a succession of states, would be more experimental and would attach greater value to primary data collection.

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