Economizing on Scientific Debate


Le négationnisme économique. Et comment s’en débarrasser (Economic Denialism, and How to Get Rid of It) has sparked lively discussion in France. What can we draw from this book for a reflection on social science methods and the terms of scientific debate?

The book Le négationnisme économique. Et comment s’en débarrasser by Pierre Cahuc and André Zylberberg has sparked a heated debate in the French press and academy. Its aim is to uncover the inadequacies, knowledge gaps, errors, and denials on the part of researchers and public actors who criticize economic science, and especially those who criticize the latter’s dominant current, the so-called mainstream economics. Its main targets are critical economists, particularly “heterodox” or “appalled economists,” but also intellectual figures from other scientific disciplines (Pierre Bourdieu, Michel Onfray, Dominique Méda, Axel Kahn), CEOs (Jean-Louis Beffa, Louis Gallois), politicians (Michel Rocard, Daniel Cohn-Bendit, Barbara Romagnan), and newspapers (Alternatives économiques).