"Theory" and "Models": Terminology Through the Looking Glass
AbstractKlein and Romeroâ€™s (2007, Econ Journal Watch) use of the terms â€œtheoryâ€ and â€œmodelâ€ seems at considerable variance from other common uses, suggesting that divergent usage by economist-authors may confront readers with substantial ambiguity. Clarity and understanding can be enhanced by sorting out the competing uses of these terms. This paper first sets forth and examines Klein-Romeroâ€™s use of â€œtheoryâ€ and â€œmodelâ€. Second, it compares their usage with several quite different if not antithetical examples in the literature. Third, it provides a tentative classification scheme of model-types to capture the range of usages of this term in economics. Our thesis is that the terms â€œtheoryâ€ and â€œmodelâ€ are incapable of carrying the diverse characteristics different economists ascribe to them. Descriptive clarity may require more than just two terms. Our classificatory scheme tries to shed light on this possibility, at least for models.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Econ Journal Watch in its journal Econ Journal Watch.
Volume (Year): 5 (2008)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
models; model building; theory; explanation; explanandum; story telling; relevance; importance;
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