- The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Economics
- Introduction: The New Philosophy of Economics
- Laws, Causation, and Economic Methodology
- If Economics Is a Science, What Kind of a Science Is It?
- Realistic Realism about Unrealistic Models
- Why There Is (as Yet) No Such Thing as an Economics of Knowledge
- Rationality and Indeterminacy
- Experimental Investigations of Social Preferences
- Competing Conceptions of the Individual in Recent Economics
- Integrating the Dynamics of Multiscale Economic Agency
- Methodological Issues in Experimental Design and Interpretation
- Progress in Economics: Lessons from the Spectrum Auctions
- Advancing Evolutionary Explanations in Economics: The Limited Usefulness of Tinbergen's Four‐Question Classification
- Computational Economics
- Microfoundations and the Ontology of Macroeconomics
- Causality, Invariance, and Policy
- The Miracle of the Septuagint and the Promise of Data Mining in Economics
- Explaining Growth
- Segmented Labor Market Models in Developing Countries
- What Is Welfare and How Can We Measure It?
- Interpersonal Comparison of Utility
- Subjective Measures of Well‐Being: Philosophical Perspectives
- Facts and Values in Modern Economics
- Author Index
- Subject Index
Abstract and Keywords
This article explains the puzzling methodology of an important econometric study of health and status. It notes the widespread use of invariance in both economic and philosophical studies of causality to guarantee that causal knowledge can be used to predict the effects of manipulations. It argues that the kind of invariance seen widely in economic methodology succeeds at this job whereas a standard kind of invariance now popular in philosophy cannot. It questions the special role of causal knowledge with respect to predictions about the effects of manipulations once the importance of adding on invariance is recognized. It also draws the despairing conclusion that both causation and invariance are poor tools for predicting the outcomes of policy and technology and to pose the challenge.
Nancy Cartwright is Professor of Philosophy at the London School of Economics and at the University of California at San Diego, and from 2006–2009, Director of the Centre for Philosophy of Natural and Social Science at LSE. She has written extensively in the philosophy of physics but since going to LSE has been concentrating in the philosophy of the social and economic sciences, especially on question of modelling and causality. She is a Fellow of the British Academy and the American Philosophical Society, a former MacArthur Fellow, and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the German Academy of Natural Science.
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