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Out now: The Rise of Econometrics

This January, Routledge Major Works published the new collection, The Rise of Econometrics. A new release from Routledge's Critical Concepts in Economics series, The Rise of Econometrics brings together the best and most influential scholarship on the rise of econometrics. Continue reading for an insight into the text from the collection’s editor...

Econometrics, ‘a unification of the theoretical-quantitative approach to economic problems’ (Ragnar Frisch), can be regarded as the most significant 20th century innovation in economics. Econometrics took shape mainly during the 1930s and 1940s and became a matured sub-discipline of economics in the subsequent three to four decades.

This present collection from Routledge is a fine-tuned assemblage of joint explorations and inventions from distinguished scholars over a span of eighty years. The collection is organized into four volumes in historical sequence. The first volume covers the very early period before econometrics became formalised, which forms the theme of the second volume. The subsequent expansion of econometric research is illustrated in the third volume, while the final volume documents major endeavours to reform and reshape econometrics since the 1970s.

The four volumes are selected to complement the relevant existing literature, such as econometrics textbooks, various handbooks of econometrics, as well as special topic collections. In particular, the selection aims at benefiting three groups of readers – students, applied economists and historians of economic and econometric thought – by filling in two major gaps in econometrics textbooks: lack of discussion on methodological issues and lack of full presentations of applied cases other than short illustrations of taught techniques.

Moreover, this Routledge collection provides readers not only with an extensive introduction of all the selected works, but also with several items which have not been published before – the lecture notes prepared by Ragnar Frisch for the Nordic Economic Meeting in Stockholm in 1931 and Jacques Drèze’s seminal paper on Bayesian econometrics, which was circulated as a working paper in 1962. This is also the first time that English translations are made available of excerpts of Oskar Morgenstern’s 1928 book in German on economic forecasting and Trygve Haavelmo’s presentation in Norwegian for the 3rd Scandinavian Meeting for young social economists at Copenhagen in 1939.

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