Economic Imperialism

66 Pages Posted: 12 May 2000 Last revised: 20 Nov 2000

See all articles by Edward P. Lazear

Edward P. Lazear

Stanford Graduate School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: August 1999

Abstract

Economics is not only a social science, it is a genuine science. Like the physical sciences, economics uses a methodology that produces refutable implications and tests these implications using solid statistical techniques. In particular, economics stresses three factors that distinguish it from other social sciences. Economists use the construct of rational individuals who engage in maximizing behavior. Economic models adhere strictly to the importance of equilibrium as part of any theory. Finally, a focus on efficiency leads economists to ask questions that other social sciences ignore. These ingredients have allowed economics to invade intellectual territory that was previously deemed to be outside the discipline's realm.

Suggested Citation

Lazear, Edward P., Economic Imperialism (August 1999). NBER Working Paper No. w7300. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=198332

Edward P. Lazear (Contact Author)

Stanford Graduate School of Business ( email )

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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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