Economic Science and Political Influence

44 Pages Posted: 19 Jan 2013

See all articles by Gilles Saint-Paul

Gilles Saint-Paul

University of Toulouse I - GREMAQ-IDEI; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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Abstract

When policymakers and private agents use models, the economists who design the model have an incentive to alter it in order to influence outcomes in a fashion consistent with their own preferences. I discuss some consequences of the existence of such ideological bias. In particular, I analyze the role of measurement infrastructures such as national statistical institutes, the extent to which intellectual competition between different schools of thought may lead to polarization of views over some parameters and at the same time to consensus over other parameters, and finally how the attempt to preserve influence can lead to degenerative research programs.

Keywords: ideology, macroeconomic modelling, self-confirming equilibria, polarization, autocoherent models, intellectual competition, degenerative research programs, identification

JEL Classification: A11, E6

Suggested Citation

Saint-Paul, Gilles, Economic Science and Political Influence. IZA Discussion Paper No. 7120. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2203270

Gilles Saint-Paul (Contact Author)

University of Toulouse I - GREMAQ-IDEI ( email )

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Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

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CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

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IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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