Imagination and imaging in model building

Philosophy of Science 71 (5):753-766 (2004)
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Modelling became one of the primary tools of mathematical economic research in the twentieth century, but when we look at examples of how nonanalogical models were first built in economics, both the process of making representations and aspects of the representing relation remain opaque. Like early astronomers, economists have to imagine how the hidden parts of their world are arranged and to make images, that is, create models, to represent how they work. The case of the Edgeworth Box, a model widely used for theoretical work in twentieth-century economics, provides a good example to explore the process of making mathematical representations of the economy. It shows how, in making these new representations, conceptual elements were developed which could not have been represented in the older verbal forms of economics.



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Citations of this work

Models and fiction.Roman Frigg - 2010 - Synthese 172 (2):251-268.
Models and representation.Roman Frigg & James Nguyen - 2017 - In Lorenzo Magnani & Tommaso Bertolotti (eds.), Springer Handbook of Model-Based Science. pp. 49-102.
Philosophy of economics.Daniel M. Hausman - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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