The Enduring Relevance of the Model Platonism Critique for Economics and Public Policy

Journal of Institutional Economics, 2012, Vol. 8(3), 289-294

6 Pages Posted: 5 Mar 2012 Last revised: 13 Aug 2012

Frank P. Maier-Rigaud

IESEG School of Management (LEM-CNRS), Department of Economics and Quantitative Methods; NERA Economic Consulting

Darrell Arnold

St. Thomas University

Date Written: March 2, 2012

Abstract

The article briefly introduces Hans Albert and the basic elements of his critique of neoclassical economics as a form of "model Platonism". The two most important elements of his general methodological critique of economics — namely the institutional vacuum inherent in much economic modelling and its unrealistic assumptions about behaviour — are introduced. It is argued that these specific critiques have been taken up with varying degrees of success in areas of economic research such as institutional economics and in the behavioural and experimental research programmes. However, the fundamental methodological gist of his critique remains as pertinent to mainstream economics as it was when originally formulated. The influence of "model Platonic" thinking remains pervasive in academia and also in public policy.

Keywords: model Platonism, economic methodology, neoclassical economics, institutional economics, bounded rationality, economic crisis, failure of economic discipline

JEL Classification: A11, B4, K21

Suggested Citation

Maier-Rigaud, Frank P. and Arnold, Darrell, The Enduring Relevance of the Model Platonism Critique for Economics and Public Policy (March 2, 2012). Journal of Institutional Economics, 2012, Vol. 8(3), 289-294. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2014692

Frank P. Maier-Rigaud (Contact Author)

IESEG School of Management (LEM-CNRS), Department of Economics and Quantitative Methods ( email )

Socle de la Grande Arche
1 Parvis de la Défense
Paris, La Défense Cedex, 92044
France

NERA Economic Consulting ( email )

1166 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036
United States

Darrell Arnold

St. Thomas University ( email )

16401 NW 37nd Ave
Miami Gardens, FL 33054
United States

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