"System change is now inevitable. Either because we do something about it, or because we will be hit by climate change. '...

"We need to develop economic models that are fit for purpose. The current economic frameworks, the ones that dominate our governments, these frameworks... the current economic frameworks, the neoclassical, the market frameworks, can deal with small changes. It can tell you the difference, if a sock company puts up the price of socks, what the demand for socks will be. It cannot tell you about the sorts of system level changes we are talking about here. We would not use an understanding of laminar flow in fluid dynamics to understand turbulent flow. So why is it we are using marginal economics, small incremental change economics, to understand system level changes?"

Monday, May 26, 2008

Why Listen to Science?

Are scientists uniquely qualified to make certain judgements about reality?

Forty years ago I think very few people would have argued otherwise. Perhaps science is not as healthy as it was then, but on the other hand, the very idea of expert opinion is threatened these days.

I make these observations in the light of an interesting opinion piece by Geoff Davies out of Australia arguing that

Those in strategic positions in our society, like politicians and journalists, who treat scientists’ collective professional judgments as no better than any other opinion are being seriously irresponsible.


(Update: Link inserted; thanks to Molnar)

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