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Novelty and the Bounds of Unknowledge in Economics

Ulrich Witt

Papers on Economics and Evolution from Philipps University Marburg, Department of Geography

Abstract: The emergence of novelty is a driving agent for economic change. New technologies, new products and services, new institutional arrangements, to mention a few examples, are the backbone of development and growth. Important though it is, the emergence of novelty is not well understood. What seems to be clear, however, is that it implies “bounds of unknowledge” (Shackle) that impose epistemological and methodological constraints on economic theorizing. In this paper, the problems will be examined, possibilities for positively theorizing about novelty will be explored, and the methodological consequences for causal explanations and the modeling of economics dynamics will be discussed.

Keywords: novelty; epistemic bounds; causation; dynamical systems; economic change; evolution Length 20 pages (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: B41 C61 D83 O30 O31 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe, nep-ino and nep-pke
Date: 2007-11
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Journal Article: Novelty and the bounds of unknowledge in economics (2009) Downloads
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