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When are inferences too fragile to be believed?

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  • John Aldrich
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    Abstract

    The use of sensitivity analysis is routine in some fields of empirical econometrics, although econometric theorists have generally taken a critical attitude towards it. This paper presents a framework in which arguments for and against such analysis can be evaluated. It appears that sensitivity is not necessarily a bad, nor sturdiness necessarily a good.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Journal of Economic Methodology.

    Volume (Year): 13 (2006)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 161-177

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    Handle: RePEc:taf:jecmet:v:13:y:2006:i:2:p:161-177

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    Related research

    Keywords: sensitivity; robustness; fragility;

    References

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    1. Hans-Martin Krolzig, 2000. "Computer Automation of General-to-Specific Model Selection Procedures," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0411, Econometric Society.
    2. Thomas Mroz, . "The Sensitivity of an Empirical Model of Married Women's Hours of Work to Economic and Statistical Assumptions," University of Chicago - Population Research Center 84-8, Chicago - Population Research Center.
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    4. Kevin Hoover & Harris Dellas, 2003. "Truth and Robustness in Cross-country Growth Regressions," Working Papers 11, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
    5. Cooley, Thomas F & LeRoy, Stephen F, 1981. "Identification and Estimation of Money Demand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 825-44, December.
    6. Spanos,Aris, 1986. "Statistical Foundations of Econometric Modelling," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521269124, April.
    7. Levine, Ross & Renelt, David, 1992. "A Sensitivity Analysis of Cross-Country Growth Regressions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 942-63, September.
    8. Potzelberger, Klaus & Polasek, Wolfgang, 1991. "Robust HPD Regions in Bayesian Regression Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(6), pages 1581-89, November.
    9. J. A. Hausman, 1976. "Specification Tests in Econometrics," Working papers 185, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    10. David Hendry & Hans-Martin Krolzig, 2000. "Computer Automation of General-to-Specific Model Selection Procedures," Economics Series Working Papers 3, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    11. Johansen, Soren, 1991. " A Bayesian Perspective on Inference from Macroeconomic Data: Comment," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 93(2), pages 249-51.
    12. Leamer, Edward E, 1991. " A Bayesian Perspective on Inference from Macroeconomic Data," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 93(2), pages 225-48.
    13. Faust, Jon, 1998. "The robustness of identified VAR conclusions about money," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 207-244, December.
    14. Aldrich, John, 1994. "Haavelmo's Identification Theory," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(01), pages 198-219, March.
    15. Jonathan Temple, 1999. "The New Growth Evidence," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(1), pages 112-156, March.
    16. repec:cup:etheor:v:10:y:1994:i:1:p:198-219 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Jon Faust, 1998. "The robustness of identified VAR conclusions about money," International Finance Discussion Papers 610, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    18. Pagan, Adrian, 1987. " Three Econometric Methodologies: A Critical Appraisal," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 1(1), pages 3-24.
    19. Mayer, Thomas, 1980. "Economics as a Hard Science: Realistic Goal or Wishful Thinking?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 18(2), pages 165-78, April.
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    Cited by:
    1. Capolupo, Rosa, 2008. "The New Growth Theories and Their Empirics after Twenty Years," Economics Discussion Papers 2008-27, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.

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