Behavioral economics is widely perceived to be part of the profession's shift away from a culture that places abstract theory at its center. I present a critical discussion of the atheoretical style with which "behavioral" themes are often disseminated: a purely anecdotal style in popular expositions, simplistic cost-benefit modeling in pieces that target a wide audience of academic economists, and the practice of capturing psychological forces by distorting familiar functional forms. I argue that the subject of "psychology and economics" is intrinsically foundational, and that a heavier dose of abstract theorizing is essential for it to realize its transformative potential.
"Behavioral Economics and the Atheoretical Style."
American Economic Journal: Microeconomics,
Economic Methodology: General
Micro-Based Behavioral Economics: General