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How-possibly explanations in economics: anything goes?

The recent literature on economic models has rejected the traditional requirement that their epistemic value necessary depended on them offering actual explanations of phenomena. Contributors to that literature have argued that many models do not aim …

How could models possibly provide how-possibly explanations?

One puzzle concerning highly idealized models is whether they explain. Some suggest they provide so-called ‘how-possibly explanations’. However, this raises an important question about the nature of how-possibly explanations, namely what …

Understanding does not depend on (causal) explanation

One can find in the literature two sets of views concerning the relationship between understanding and explanation: that one understands only if 1) one has knowledge of causes and 2) that knowledge is provided by an explanation. Taken together, these …

Non-causal understanding with economic models: the case of general equilibrium

How can we use models to understand real phenomena if models misrepresent the very phenomena we seek to understand? Some accounts suggest that models may afford understanding by providing causal knowledge about phenomena via how-possibly …