The Journal of Philosophical Economics: Reflections on Economic and Social Issues

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  • Volume I Issue 1
    (Autumn 2007)
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    (Special issue 2008)
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    (Autumn 2008)
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    (Spring 2009)
  • Volume III Issue 1
    (Autumn 2009)
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    (Spring 2010)
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    (Special issue 2010)
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    (Spring 2011)
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    (Autumn 2011)
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    (Spring 2012)
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    (Spring 2013)
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    (Autumn 2013)
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    (Spring 2014)
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  • Volume XIII Issue 1
    (Autumn 2019)
  • Volume XIII Issue 2
    (Spring - Autumn 2020)
Bjørn­Ivar Davidsen is associate professor at Ostfold University College, Halden, Norway (
Methodology and the practice of economists – a philosophical approach (Bjørn-Ivar DAVIDSEN)
Abstract: Practicing academic economists are reported to pay little attention to work being done by economic methodologists. This is an unfortunate situation for the sub­field of economic methodology as well as for the discipline of economics at large. If the sub­field of economic methodology does not succeed in communicating with practitioners of the larger discipline of which it is a part, its rationale is seriously brought into question. And when practitioners of a scientific discipline do not pay heed to methodological questions, the discipline is destined to stagnation and possible degeneration.
In order to contribute to an amelioration of the noted unfortunate state of affairs, this paper argues the case for purposeful philosophically informed approaches through which economic methodologists may prove themselves helpful and valuable to the practitioners of the discipline. A scheme of descriptive­critical analyses of economic texts is set forth as a means of enhancing academic economists’ awareness of, and interest in, philosophical questions embedded in, and vital to, their practices. Moreover, it is argued, and exemplified, how philosophically minded methodologists may contribute constructively to processes directed towards establishing and developing economic theories and analyses. [Volume II Issue 1 (Autumn 2008)] Read the article ...
Towards a critical realist-inspired economic methodology (Bjørn-Ivar DAVIDSEN)
Abstract: This paper argues that critical realism conceived as a meta­theory for scientific activities offers a consistent set of helpful philosophical resources from which a potentially fruitful position of economic methodology may be developed. When fully developed, a critical realist­inspired economic methodology may in turn underlabour for more concrete scientific undertakings, economic theorising and applied analyses. Adopting such a strategy for further advancement of the critical realist project would prove a much needed supplement to, or perhaps even substitute for, the currently dominating strategy of grand scale philosophical underlabouring aimed at reorienting more or less the whole discipline of economics. The main trust of the argument made then, is that critical realism comes with a constructive and practical potential that goes beyond critiques of mainstream economics and philosophical underlabouring for already existing schools of thought within economics and that it is time for this potential to be actualised. [Volume III Issue 2 (Spring 2010)] Read the article ...
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