Why Economists Disregard Economic Methodology
Institute for Empirical Research in Economics Working Paper No. 58
14 Pages Posted: 23 Nov 2000
Date Written: September 2000
This paper advances two propositions, one concerning content, the other concerning research strategy. (1) The advent of widespread internet publishing reduces the stifling impact of the refereeing process on the papers accepted and submitted to journals. Economics scholars are less bound to devoting a large part of their time and effort on formalisms. They have more leeway to concentrate on matters of content. This greater freedom also improves the chances of the advice and suggestions proposed by economic methodologists being put into practice. (2) Economic methodology is only able to influence the practice of economics if it takes into account the incentives to which scholars are subjected when they want to pursue an academic career and become prominent. Incentives are transmitted by institutions; it is therefore necessary for economic methodology to analyse how institutions work and how they may change in the future.
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