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La critique d’ad hocité en économie. L’exemple des théories de la croissance

  • Stéphane CARCILLO

    (MATISSE-SET, Université de Paris 1)

  • Véronique REIFFERS

    (C3ED, Université de Versailles)

La critique d'ad hocité est courante en économie, mais elle reste confuse, reposant aussi bien sur des arguments d'ordre heuristique (fondements microéconomiques), que sur des arguments d'ordre empirique (ajustement d'une théorie aux faits). Si l'épistémologie d'inspiration poppérienne fournit des définitions utiles, quoique discutables, de l'ad hocité, une revue de quelques commentaires récents révèle un autre sens attribué par les économistes : une hypothèse qui manque de fondements empiriques tout en étant essentielle à la dérivation des certaines conclusions. Nous cherchons ensuite à déterminer dans quelle mesure les théories de la croissance endogène sont exposées à la critique d'ad hocité. Tout d'abord, s'il est impossible d'affirmer que certaines hypothèses communes à tous les modèles (rendements constants dans la production et forme des fonctions d'utilité) sont ad hoc d'un point de vue empirique ou heuristique, la véritable critique qui peut leur être adressée relève plutôt d'un manque de réalisme. Ensuite, la tentative d'ajustement du modèle néoclassique à l'absence de convergence internationale illustre la difficile application de l'ad hoc dans son acception empirique. Enfin, l'utilisation de l'agent représentatif dans les modèles de croissance en concurrence imparfaite est évaluée à la lumière d'une définition heuristique de l'ad hocité.

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Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) in its series Discussion Papers (REL - Recherches Economiques de Louvain) with number 2001025.

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Length: 28
Date of creation: 01 Jun 2001
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvre:2001025
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  1. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
  2. Baumol, William J, 1986. "Productivity Growth, Convergence, and Welfare: What the Long-run Data Show," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(5), pages 1072-85, December.
  3. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1975. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 64, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  4. Hicks, John, 1989. "The Assumption of Constant Returns to Scale," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 13(1), pages 9-17, March.
  5. Rebelo, Sergio, 1991. "Long-Run Policy Analysis and Long-Run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 500-521, June.
  6. Christensen, Laurits R & Jorgenson, Dale W & Lau, Lawrence J, 1975. "Transcendental Logarithmic Utility Functions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 65(3), pages 367-83, June.
  7. Backhouse, R.E., 1993. "The Lakatosian Legacy in Economnic Methodology," Discussion Papers 93-14, Department of Economics, University of Birmingham.
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