Thursday, October 14, 2010

Goodhart's law, Campbell's law, Lucas critique

From blogger Abi of Nanopolitan I learn of named principles that are pertinent to the problem of citation scamming and what to do about it.


In some banter in the M.S. El Naschie and Ji-Huan He catch more flak comments, Hossam and I talked about what should be done to foil those like He and El Naschie who game the system. Should university ranking systems be adjusted to compensate? Should offenders be publicly humiliated? Etc.

Here are the three principles:

Once a social or economic indicator or other surrogate measure is made a target for the purpose of conducting social or economic policy, then it will lose the information content that would qualify it to play such a role.


The more any quantitative social indicator is used for social decision-making, the more subject it will be to corruption pressures and the more apt it will be to distort and corrupt the social processes it is intended to monitor.


Given that the structure of an econometric model consists of optimal decision rules of economic agents, and that optimal decision rules vary systematically with changes in the structure of series relevant to the decision maker, it follows that any change in policy will systematically alter the structure of econometric models.


They do not give much hope that twiddling the parameters in university ratings and citation systems will thwart the Naschies and Hes of the world.


Related posts:


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