The Invisible Hand in Economics: How Economists Explain Unintended Social Consequences

The Invisible Hand in Economics How Economists Explain Unintended Social Consequences INEM Advances in Economic Methodology London: Routledge, 2008. This is a book about one of the most controversial concepts in economics: the invisible hand. The author explores the unintended social consequences implied by the invisible hand and discusses the mechanisms that bring about theseContinue reading “The Invisible Hand in Economics: How Economists Explain Unintended Social Consequences”

Understanding with theoretical models

ABSTRACT. This paper discusses the epistemic import of highly abstract and simplified theoretical models using Thomas Schelling’s checkerboard model as an example. We argue that the epistemic contribution of theoretical models can be better understood in the context of a cluster of models relevant to the explanatory task at hand. The central claim of theContinue reading “Understanding with theoretical models”

The diversity of models as a means to better explanations in economics

ABSTRACT. In Economics Rules, Rodrik [(2015). Economics rules: Why economics works, when it fails, and how to tell the difference. Oxford: Oxford University Press] argues that what makes economics powerful despite the limitations of each and every model is its diversity of models. Rodrik suggests that the diversity of models in economics improves its explanatory capacities, butContinue reading “The diversity of models as a means to better explanations in economics”

Philosophy of Economics – Syllabus

This semester I am teaching the Philosophy of Economics course at the Erasmus University Rotterdam to the students of Erasmus School of Economics. Here is the  Syllabus, which also includes a reading list. Comments and suggestions are welcome.


Call for Papers WHAT TO MAKE OF HIGHLY UNREALISTIC MODELS? Workshop 12-13 OCTOBER 2017 TINT Academy of Finland Centre of Excellence in the Philosophy of Social Sciences University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland What to make of highly unrealistic models? This is one of the big questions in contemporary philosophy of science, especially inContinue reading “CFP: WHAT TO MAKE OF HIGHLY UNREALISTIC MODELS?”

A review of James Kwak’s Economism

I just finished reading James Kwak’s Economism: Bad Economics and the Rise of Inequality. Here is a quick review of the book.[1] Imagine a first-year economics student. After attending six lectures in introductory economics, and carefully studying the first six chapters of his economics textbook, s/he gets comfortable with the basic supply-demand model. Bedazzled byContinue reading “A review of James Kwak’s Economism”

Understanding Economic Models (Course)

Course code: FILM-353, Understanding Economic Models, 5 cr, University of Helsinki Syllabus (fall 2016) This is a course that will improve your understanding of economics, and broaden your horizon concerning what economists do. We will present you the necessary tools and tricks to tackle very difficult questions concerning the status of economics as a science.Continue reading “Understanding Economic Models (Course)”

Economics Students Review Rodrik’s Economics Rules

Dani Rodrik’s excellent new book Economics Rules was one of the required readings for my Comparative Schools of Economic Thought course at Boğaziçi University (Istanbul, Turkey). Below are some of the reviews written for this course. Enjoy!   Pietro Trevisan Volta: Dani Rodrik’s Economic Rules: Defending economics against economists? A critical review [PDF] Ipek Kavasoglu: From Weakness To Strength: A Review of DaniContinue reading “Economics Students Review Rodrik’s Economics Rules”

Using and Abusing Models in Economics: A Review of Rodrik’s Economics Rules

“There is much to criticize in economics, but there is also much to appreciate” Dani Rodrik (in Economics Rules, p. ix) Dani Rodrik’s new book Economics Rules: The Rights and Wrongs of the Dismal Science will be available soon. Here is an early quick review of the book. If you do not have much time, hereContinue reading “Using and Abusing Models in Economics: A Review of Rodrik’s Economics Rules”