Is there a cult of statistical significance in Agricultural Economics?

In an analysis of articles published in ten years of the American Economic Review, Deirdre McCloskey and Stephen Ziliak have shown that economists often fail to adequately distinguish economic and statistical significance. In this paper, we briefly review their arguments and develop a ten-item questionnaire on the statistical practice in the Agricultural Economics community. We apply our questionnaire to the 2015 volumes of the American Journal of Agricultural Economics, the European Review of Agricultural Economics, the Journal of Agricultural Economics, and the American Economic Review. We specifically focus on the “sizeless stare” and the negligence of economic significance. Our initial results indicate that there is room of improvement in statistical practice. Empirical papers rarely consider the power of statistical tests or run simulations. The economic consequences of estimation results are often not adequately addressed. We discuss the implications of our findings for the publication process and teaching in Agricultural Economics.


Issue Date:
Aug 15 2017
Publication Type:
Conference Paper/ Presentation
Language:
English
Total Pages:
9




 Record created 2017-08-17, last modified 2017-08-23

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