Some thoughts on the social sciences.
I am currently taking a course on the epistemology of disagreement and social epistemology. One of the topics that came up was about what to do about experts. What we generally concluded was that especially in the physical sciences, areas of massive agreement by experts of that field could generally be understood to be reliable. In a subsequent discussion, he seemed to argue that consensus in the social sciences (including economics) was more complicated. There were two reasons for this.
1. The subject of study in the social sciences is a moving target as social norms and behaviours etc change. i.e. consensus does not necessarily reflect any enduring fact about reality. (although it may do so)
2. There is a looping effect as people are intelligent and can change their behaviour in response to theorising.
What do the social scientists and economists among you think?