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Information in Economics: A Fictionalist Account

Mirowski, Philip

Journal of Contextual Economics – Schmollers Jahrbuch, Vol. 136 (2016), Iss. 1: pp. 109–130

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John J. Reilly Center, University of Notre Dame, 452 Geddes Hall, Notre Dame, Indiana 46556

Abstract

We propose that certain classes of economic models best be understood as ‘fictions,’ in the sense promoted by Roman Frigg and others. The structure of the argument parallels that made by Arnon Levy for information in biology. The lesson is that economists are not really all that concerned over the sorts of things, such as the nature of knowledge, that philosophers deem central to epistemology.

JEL Codes: B21, B41, D80