Reflection without Rules: Economic Methodology and Contemporary Science Theory

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Overview

Reflection without Rules offers a comprehensive, pointed exploration of the methodological tradition in economics and the breakdown of the received view within the philosophy of science. Professor Hands investigates economists' use of naturalistic and sociological paradigms to model economic phenomena and assesses the roles of pragmatism, discourse, and situatedness in discussions of economic practice before turning to a systematic exploration of more recent developments in economic methodology. The treatment emphasizes the changes taking place in science theory and its relationship to the movement away from a rules-based view of economic methodology.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Wade Hands [is] the perfect author...he reads everything...he is a master of the critical survey. His treatment is even-handed...Reflection without Rules contains a balanced critical review of the latest developments in economic methodology. [E]very economist interested in methodology...should have this book on his or her shelf." Bruce Caldwell, University of North Carolina, Greensboro, Southern Economic Journal

"This fine book is a comprehensive and careful survey of the current situation in the methodology of economics...[the] author wears his impressive erudition gracefully and well. The book is sophisticated and at the same time naive in the best sense. It will fortunately be the standard reference for work in the methodology of economics for some time to come." Isis

"We have not have a Blaug-like representation of methodological discourse, historicized, contextualized. We have not since Blaugh had a reliable volume that our students can use, one book about which we say say, 'read this and you'll know where the field stands'. But now we have that book. Wade Hands has been a major participant in these various debates over the past twenty years, and over that time he has become a leader among his colleagues in the methodology of economics. Hand's Reflection Without Rules is indeed a worthy successor to Blaug's The Methodology of Economics... the absolutely accurate phrase or label from Hand's own treatment should be 'Economic Science Studies (ESS)'. We have a reconfiguring of economic methodology away from the philosophy of science to science studies. Hands lovingly and accurately traces these moves in this volume. Methodology is dead. May ESS prosper."

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521497152
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 4/28/2001
  • Pages: 492
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 1.26 (d)

Table of Contents

1. Introduction; 2. The methodological tradition in economics; 3. The breakdown of the received view within the philosophy of science; 4. The naturalistic turn; 5. The sociological turn; 6. Pragmatism, discourse, and situatedness; 7. Recent developments in economic methodology; 8. The economic turn; 9. Conclusion.
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