I looked up a definition of "science," and came up with this:
The intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment.So, as economists we are systematic, we study the structure of the economy and the behavior of individuals in it, and we observe and experiment. Thus, apparently, we are a science. But Krugman does not think so:
I’ve never liked the notion of talking about economic “science” — it’s much too raw and imperfect a discipline to be paired casually with things like chemistry or biology, and in general when someone talks about economics as a science I immediately suspect that I’m hearing someone who doesn’t know that models are only models.Of course the chemists and biologists also have models, and those models are only models as well. What is it we do, if not science?
Here's what Krugman closes with:
...liberal economists by and large do seem to be genuinely wrestling with what has happened, but conservative economists don’t.Apparently Krugman has not been to a macro seminar or serious economics conference for a long time. But maybe all the people writing those papers on the financial crisis are all liberals? I didn't ask. Maybe Krugman has in mind a particular definition of "wrestling," i.e. he/she who actually wrestles uses an IS-LM model.