Good and bad justifications of analytical modelling

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Gilboa, Postlewaite, Samuelson and Schmeidler (2022, Economic theories and their dueling interpretations. Journal of Economic Methodology, 1–20.; henceforth GPSS) give a ‘sociological’ account of various ways in which economists claim to find value in ‘analytical’ models–i.e. models that investigate formal relationships between concepts without deriving substantive empirical or normative conclusions. In this paper, I argue that some of the claims that GPSS report economists as making are defensible, but that others are used in support of modelling strategies that have little or no scientific value.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Economic Methodology
Early online date13 Nov 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 13 Nov 2023


  • Economic methodology
  • Analytical models
  • economics
  • economic methodology
  • Models
  • modelling

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