On Quantitative Thinking in Economics

On Quantitative Thinking in Economics

On Quantitative Thinking in Economics

On Quantitative Thinking in Economics

Excerpt

A thorough reconstruction of economics as a quantitative science is urgently needed and, indeed, long overdue. In no other branch of modern science would such a general lack of quantitative definiteness as still prevails in economics be tolerated. The aim of the reconstruction must be to present the actual facts and problems of economic life in the most distinct form and, as far as possible, in measurable terms. To succeed in this work, economists must relieve themselves of the oppressive burden of withered notions and barren dogmas, inherited from the highly theoretical and scholastic controversies of a past century, and face with youthful vigour and up-to-date scientific equipment the problems of their own age.

Such reconstruction is of great interest to the steadily growing circle of those who, in their life's practical work, are confronted with economic questions and social relations of a more and more complex nature. What such people naturally demand, and are entitled to demand, is a clear exposition of the elements of economics, detached from old dogmatic controversies, free from contradictions and unnecessary complications, and so generally accepted that it can serve as a reliable basis for a profitable discussion of present-day problems.

The task is great; it involves in fact a general raising . . .

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