Economics is philosophy, economics is not science

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An environmentalist's outlook is typically claimed to be based on or even constituted by sound science. It would be natural then for a version of economics based on such insights to claim to be 'even more' scientific than traditional economics. I argue for a conclusion radically opposed to this. I suggest that a genuinely green economics will/should eschew any claims to scientificity. I aim to liberate economics from the albatross of scientific ambition. I urge greens not to try to legitimate their aspirations for the world and for society principally by means of science, but rather to embrace green economics as a point of view that has at its heart an endless love of and faith in life. I submit that economics is not science, but rather philosophy, and that a Green political philosophy of life will suffer, and not profit, from pretending otherwise.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)307-325
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Green Economics
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2007


  • Friedman
  • Green
  • Mirowski
  • Physics
  • Political economy
  • Utility

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