In her book, “The Retreat of the State,” Susan Strange calls out social scientists for “clinging to obsolete and inappropriate theories.” She argues that these irrelevant theories that many political scientists and economists still follow do not hold in the complex world that we live in today. As an economics major, I kind of laughed when I came across this line because I obviously don’t agree with her stance. While the best known theories in economics (Keynesian or Classical Economics) may not represent the real world, they do help form the foundation for many of the newer theories in the field. Many policy decisions that take place every day are made using the models that social scientists have created. Social scientists are continuing to develop new, increasingly accurate models to model human behavior and economic situations.
While it is very difficult to create reliable and useful models, Strange should not write off the entire field as being obsolete in this new world. The field is continuing to evolve to keep pace with our increasingly complex world. Social sciences attempt to explain what is generally considered unexplainable, and its benefits to the world cannot be understated.