Why is economics a science?

Save

Economists view themselves as scientists and their field of expertise as scientific. As part of their work, economists collect data, test hypotheses and develop theories to explain how economic phenomena work.

History

  • Philosopher Karl Popper defined something as scientific if there is a logical possibility of it being found false. Economists see economics as a science under Popper's definition.

Features

  • Economics has a set of theories that explains how economies work. Economists develop these theories after extensive observation, research and critical analysis. These are elements of the scientific method.

Benefits

  • Just as the physical sciences offer basic, simplified explanations for understanding a complex world, economics offers similar statements for explaining how economies work.

Considerations

  • Although economists use observations, theories and other scientific tools, they cannot conduct controlled laboratory experiments, unlike their counterparts in the physical sciences. Economists cannot, for example, manipulate prices in the economy, and must rely instead on facts as they present themselves in the natural world.

Prevention/Solution

  • To compensate for the lack of laboratory conditions, economic science uses statistical analysis as a way to hold certain variables constant and observe the effects of other variables.

References

  • Principles of Economics (3rd edition); N. Gregory Mankiw; 2003
  • Theories of Political Economy; James Caporaso and David Levine; 1994
  • Photo Credit Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Mark Wallace
Promoted By Zergnet

Comments

Resources

You May Also Like

  • Why Is Marginal Analysis Important in Economics?

    Most economic decisions are made at the margin. Consumers weigh the benefit from buying one more item; businesses calculate the cost of...

  • Why Should Engineers Study Economics?

    The increased diversity of technologies, resources and consequences of design requires that engineers have a firm grasp of economics. In his book...

  • What Is Scarcity in Economics?

    If you understand what scarcity does to product prices, you can predict price increases in resources, wages and real estate. Once you...

  • Why Is Saving Called a Leakage in Economics?

    Maintaining a strong economy is an important policy objective that gives everyone employment opportunities and a good standard of living. Consumer spending...

  • Why Is Studying Economics Important?

    Studying economics can offer you an interesting opportunity to maximize your potential in both school and the workplace. The benefits are extensive,...

  • How to Explain Economics

    Economics is simply the study of financial behavior. Its foundation begins with the laws of supply and demand and extends to such...

  • Sciences Related to Economics

    Economics, the study of the production and transfer of wealth, is a science in and of itself. However, additional fields of science...

  • Why Get a Master's in Economics?

    The study of economics blends logic, statistical analysis and creativity. Obtaining a master's degree in the field sharpens these skills and makes...

  • The Scientific Methods in the Study of Economics

    Economics began as a branch of moral philosophy during the 18th century but has developed over time to become a discipline that...

  • Project Topics in Economics

    Understanding the different concepts of economics is a vital part of being financially successful. There are many aspects of economics that students...

Related Searches

Check It Out

Can You Take Advantage Of Student Loan Forgiveness?

M
Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!