Nov 17, 2008

Schumpeter on how to write a PhD thesis

"In every scientific venture the thing that comes first is Vision. That is to say, before embarking upon analytic work of any kind we must first single out the set of phenomena we wish to investigate, and acquire 'intuitively' a preliminary notion of how they hang together or, in other words, of what appear from our standpoint to be their fundamental properties. This should be obvious. If it is not, this is only owing to the fact that in practice we mostly do not start from a vision of our own but from the work of our predecessors or from ideas that float in the public mind"

This is why you need to read newspapers and blogs and not academic journals when in need of ideas for research.

ht: Wyplosz' office door!

This extract is from Schumpeter's History of Economic Analysis (1954)


Dany said...

“Can capitalism survive? No. I do not think it can.”

J.A. Schumpeter
Capitalism, Socialism, and Democracy (First statement, 1942)

Katya said...

that's just the teaser. if u actually read the book, he will show you why it will :P

Katya said...

pl, how are blogs different from "ideas that float in the public mind"? we should stop reading, period.

Pierre-Louis said...

true! but newspapers are more facts than ideas...i guess its better to get inspired from facts and boservations than from previous analyses...makes sense?

Agnes Villarreal said...

I think doing something else than writing the thesis paper can really be good. It would help clear the mind from stress cluttering cause by stress. And having a clear mind can be good when formulating thesis abstracts or other part of the paper.