[OPE-L:6207] Re: Re: econometrics

From: Allin Cottrell (cottrell@wfu.edu)
Date: Mon Nov 19 2001 - 14:47:00 EST

On Mon, 19 Nov 2001, Andrew Brown wrote:

> 1) Whether the only game or not, the trouble I find with typical
> econometric methods (typically based on multiple regression), is
> that the theoretical assumptions are *always* broken...

It's difficult to do econometrics right -- but doing it right involves
rigorous testing for violation of the required statistical properties
of the error term, and the use of alternative estimators where needed.

> 2) Does 'calibration' count as another game so suggesting there is
> another game in town after all?

I think you're right, calibration is an alternative -- for researchers
who are certain in advance that their theory is right and who just
want to quantify parameters rather than test hypotheses.

> 3) Why do you (Allin) reject Tony Lawson's characterisation of
> neoclassical economics as deductivist? As you know, Lawson's
> arguments tie econometrics closely to neoclassical economics, if
> they are accepted.

I don't think I disagree with Tony Lawson's characterization of
neoclassical economics as such.  I'm less persuaded by his critique of
econometrics.  This is a rather complex subject; I wrote about it in
"Realism, Regularities and Prediction" (Review of Social Economy,
LVI/3, Fall 1998).

Allin Cottrell.

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