How Economics Should Be Done
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How Economics Should Be Done

Essays on the Art and Craft of Economics

David C. Colander and Huei-Chun Su

David Colander has been writing about economic methodology for over 30 years, but he goes out of his way to emphasize that he does not see himself as a methodologist. His pragmatic methodology is applicable to what economists are doing and attempts to answer questions that all economists face as they go about their work. The articles collected in this volume are divided, with the first part providing a framework underlying Colander’s methodology and introducing Colander’s methodology for economic policy within that framework. Part two presents Colander’s view on the methodology for microeconomics, while part three looks at Colander’s methodology for macroeconomics. The book closes with discussions of broader issues.
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Chapter 9: Complexity Economics and Workaday Economic Policy

Essays on the Art and Craft of Economics

David Colander

Abstract

Much of what filters down to standard economists about complexity economics are summaries of abstract analysis that are generally seen as having little direct impact on the workaday policy analysis that most economists do. This chapter argues that complexity theory has significant implications for workaday economic policy. Even if economists do not accept that the complexity scientific theory of the economy is ready for prime time, the complexity vision, which pictures an economy as a complex evolving system undergoing continual evolutionary change, has direct relevance for their workaday applied policy.

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