Economic Methodology: A Bibliometric Perspective

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Using tools from social network analysis, we study citation patterns since the early 1990s in the two most important journals in economic methodology (aka philosophy of economics). We mostly focus on assessing four historical claims in the existing interpretive literature. In agreement with the literature, we find that (1) it is sensible to split the field along three dimensions (corresponding to action theory, ethics and philosophy of science) and that (2) the interest for general philosophical questions (known as Big M) has steadily declined. Contra the literature, we find that (3) there is no move away from heterodox economics in the main journals: no significant interest was present to begin with. Finally, we update the literature regarding an alleged move toward the study of mainstream pluralism: (4) although this direction describes well the early 2000s, the field in the 2010s is better characterized as mainly fascinated by behavioral economics.


Scientometrics, bibliometrics, economic methodology, philosophy of economics, quantitative history


This content has been updated on January 16th, 2021 at 10 h 39 min.