IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/att/wimass/9707.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

A Formal Model of Theory Vhoice in Science

Author

Listed:
  • Brock, W.A.
  • Durlauf, S.N.

Abstract

Since the classic work of Feyerabend and Kuhn, the role of social factors in the scientific enterprise has been a major concern in the philosophy and history of science. In particular, the presence of social factors such as the desire for prestige or pressures to conform to accepted ideas, have been regarded as reasons to question whether science naturally progresses towards more and more accurate approximations of reality. In this paper, we propose a formal model of theory choice which incorporates private and social influences. We provide a characterization of the interaction of social factors with theory choice. Our results demonstrate that the influence of social factors on scientific progress is far more complex than is typically assumed. In particular, we provide conditions under which social influences actually enhance the rate at which a superior theory replaces its inferior predecessor.

Suggested Citation

  • Brock, W.A. & Durlauf, S.N., 1997. "A Formal Model of Theory Vhoice in Science," Working papers 9707, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  • Handle: RePEc:att:wimass:9707
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.ssc.wisc.edu/econ/archive/wp9707.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. William A. Brock & Steven N. Durlauf, 1995. "Discrete Choice with Social Interactions I: Theory," NBER Working Papers 5291, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Blume Lawrence E., 1993. "The Statistical Mechanics of Strategic Interaction," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 5(3), pages 387-424, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Marek Loužek, 2012. "Ekonomie vědy - naděje, nebo léčka?
      [Economics of Science - A Hope or a Pitfall?]
      ," Politická ekonomie, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2012(4), pages 536-550.
    2. Emilio Barucci & Marco Tolotti, 2012. "Identity, reputation and social interaction with an application to sequential voting," Journal of Economic Interaction and Coordination, Springer;Society for Economic Science with Heterogeneous Interacting Agents, vol. 7(1), pages 79-98, May.
    3. Bramoullé, Yann & Saint-Paul, Gilles, 2010. "Research cycles," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(5), pages 1890-1920, September.
    4. Kaizoji, Taisei (kaizoji@icu.ac.jp), 2010. "A Behavioral Model of Bubbles and Crashes," MPRA Paper 20352, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Damien Besancenot & Radu Vranceanu, 2014. "Fear of novelty : a model of scientific discovery with strategic uncertainty," Working Papers hal-01117929, HAL.
    6. Damien Besancenot & Habib Dogguy, 2015. "Paradigm Shift: A Mean Field Game Approach," Bulletin of Economic Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(3), pages 289-302, July.
    7. Henry G. Overman, 2004. "Can we learn anything from economic geography proper?," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 4(5), pages 501-516, November.
    8. William A. Brock & Steven N. Durlauf, 2003. "Multinomial Choice with Social Interactions," NBER Technical Working Papers 0288, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Arthur Diamond, 1998. "Book Reviews," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(2), pages 304-310.
    10. Roberta Patalano, 2007. "Mind-dependence. The past in the grip of the present," Discussion Papers 1_2007, D.E.S. (Department of Economic Studies), University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
    11. Damien Besancenot & Radu Vranceanu, 2015. "Fear Of Novelty: A Model Of Scientific Discovery With Strategic Uncertainty," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 53(2), pages 1132-1139, April.
    12. Paul David & Matthijs den Besten & Ralph Schroeder, 2008. "Will e-Science Be Open Science?," Discussion Papers 08-010, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, revised Jan 2009.
    13. Durlauf, S.N., 1997. "Rational Choice and the Study of Science," Working papers 9709r, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
    14. Opolot, Daniel, 2012. "Social interactions and complex networks," MERIT Working Papers 014, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    15. D. Sornette, 2014. "Physics and Financial Economics (1776-2014): Puzzles, Ising and Agent-Based models," Papers 1404.0243, arXiv.org.
    16. Levy, Moshe, 2005. "Social phase transitions," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 71-87, May.
    17. Roger Koppl, 2011. "Against representative agent methodology," The Review of Austrian Economics, Springer;Society for the Development of Austrian Economics, vol. 24(1), pages 43-55, March.
    18. Emilio Barucci & Marco Tolotti, 2009. "The dynamics of social interaction with agents’ heterogeneity," Working Papers 189, Department of Applied Mathematics, Università Ca' Foscari Venezia.
    19. Wesley Phoa & Sergio Focardi & Frank Fabozzi, 2007. "How do conflicting theories about financial markets coexist?," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(3), pages 363-391.
    20. Roberta Patalano, 2007. "Mind-Dependence. The Past in the Grip of the Present," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 85-107, August.
    21. Brock,W.A., 2003. "Tipping points, abrupt opinion changes, and punctuated policy change," Working papers 28, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
    22. Pigeard de Almeida Prado, Fernando & Belitsky, Vladimir & Ferreira, Alex Luiz, 2011. "Social interactions, product differentiation and discontinuity of demand," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(4-5), pages 642-653.
    23. Carayol, Nicolas & Dalle, Jean-Michel, 2007. "Sequential problem choice and the reward system in Open Science," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 167-191, June.
    24. A. Bassanini, 1997. "Localized Technological Change and Path-Dependent Growth," Working Papers ir97086, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    DECISION MAKING ; CHOICE;

    JEL classification:

    • B20 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - - - General
    • B25 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - - - Historical; Institutional; Evolutionary; Austrian; Stockholm School

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:att:wimass:9707. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ailsenne Sumwalt). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.