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Economic Science and Political Influence

  • Saint-Paul, Gilles

When policymakers and private agents use models, the economists who design the model have an incentive to alter it in order influence outcomes in a fashion consistent with their own preferences. I discuss some consequences of the existence of such ideological bias. In particular, I analyze the role of measurement infrastructures such as national statistical institutes, the extent to which intellectual competition between different schools of thought may lead to polarization of views over some parameters and at the same time to consensus over other parameters, and finally how the attempt to preserve influence can lead to degenerative research programs.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 9263.

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Date of creation: Dec 2012
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:9263
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  1. Olivier Blanchard, 2009. "The State of Macro," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 1(1), pages 209-228, 05.
  2. Fudenberg, Drew & Levine, David K., 2009. "Self-confirming Equilibrium and the Lucas Critique," Scholarly Articles 4686412, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  3. Bos, Frits, 2011. "Three centuries of macro-economic statistics," MPRA Paper 35391, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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