Reversible Statistics: The Making of Statistical Facts and Artifacts in Economics

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The study aims is to describe how the inclusion and exclusion of materials and calculative devices construct the boundaries and distinctions between statistical facts and artifacts in economics. My methodological approach is inspired by John Graunt's (1667) Political arithmetic and more recent work within constructivism and the field of Science and Technology Studies (STS). The result of this approach is here termed reversible statistics, reconstructing the findings of a statistical study within economics in three different ways. It is argued that all three accounts are quite normal, albeit in different ways. The presence and absence of diverse materials, both natural and political, is what distinguishes them from each other. Arguments are presented for a more symmetric relation between the scientific statistical text and the reader. I will argue that a more symmetric relation can be achieved by accounting for the significance of the materials and the equipment that enters into the production of statistics. Key words: Reversible statistics, diverse materials, constructivism, economics, science, and technology.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationKøbenhavn
Number of pages28
ISBN (Electronic)x656455925
Publication statusPublished - 2004

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