Econophysics: making sense of a chimera

European Journal for Philosophy of Science 11 (4):1-34 (2021)
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The history of economic thought witnessed several prominent economists who took seriously models and concepts in physics for the elucidation and prediction of economic phenomena. Econophysics is an emerging discipline at the intersection of heterodox economics and the physics of complex systems, with practitioners typically engaged in two overlapping but distinct methodological programs. The first is to export mathematical methods used in physics for the purposes of studying economic phenomena. The second is to export mechanisms in physics into economics. A conclusion is drawn that physics transfer is often justified at the level of mathematical transfer but unjustified at the level of mechanistic transfer.


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Adrian K. Yee
Lingnan University

Citations of this work

Edgeworth’s Mathematization of Social Well-Being.Adrian K. Yee - 2024 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 103 (C):5-15.

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References found in this work

Thinking about mechanisms.Peter Machamer, Lindley Darden & Carl F. Craver - 2000 - Philosophy of Science 67 (1):1-25.
Risk, Uncertainty and Profit.Frank H. Knight - 1921 - University of Chicago Press.
Economics and reality.Tony Lawson - 1997 - New York: Routledge.

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