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Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 June 2014

Duo Qin*
University of London
*Address correspondence to Duo Qin, Department of Economics, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, United Kingdom; e-mail:


Much of modern econometrics stems directly from the post-1940 works of Haavelmo and the Cowles Commission (CC) Monograph 10. This paper examines the consolidation process of the Haavelmo-CC research program mainly during the 1950–70 period from three aspects: (i) developments of econometrics textbooks, (ii) emerging themes and trends in econometric research, and (iii) the contribution of the program to empirical modeling of real-world issues. The examination reveals that the program has gained dominance primarily through its adherence to the scientific banner and style rather than its empirical relevance. The adoption of the hard science methodology is decisive in winning over the academic community; the taxonomy of econometrics into steps involving primarily specification, identification, and estimation has played a pivotal role in generating compartmentalized research topics with manageable technical challenge and also in facilitating the educational need for compiling self-contained subjects and definitely soluble questions.

Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2014 

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