Stylized Facts and Experimentation

Charles Crabtree, Christopher J. Fariss

Sociological Science, October 12, 2016
DOI 10.15195/v3.a39

Abstract

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In this comment, we clarify and extend Hirschman’s (2016) discussion of “stylized facts.” Our focus is on the relationship between stylized facts and experimentation. Given the continued increase in experimentation across the social sciences, we think that it is important to consider the exact role that experiments play in the production and testing of stylized facts. We make three related contributions here. First, we describe how experiments can both provide new evidence to support existing stylized facts as well as produce new stylized facts. Second, we argue that the stylized facts produced through experimentation differ from other stylized facts. Third, we extend Hirschman’s (2016) definition of “stylized facts” so that it distinguishes between those that describe correlation relationships and those that describe causal relationships.

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Charles Crabtree: Department of Political Science, University of Michigan
Email: ccrabtr@umich.edu

Christopher J. Fariss: Department of Political Science, University of Michigan
Email: cjf0006@gmail.com

Acknowledgements: We thank Volha Chykina and Rose McDermott for their helpful comments.

  • Citation: Crabtree, Charles, and Christopher J. Fariss. 2016. “Stylized Facts and Experimentation.” Sociological Science 3: 910-914.
  • Received: August 12, 2016
  • Accepted: August 28, 2016
  • Editors: Jesper Sørensen, Sarah Soule
  • DOI: 10.15195/v3.a39

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