This paper reviews Sheila Dow’s contributions to open systems thinking as a form of methodological argument and as an important foundation for pluralism in economics. It reviews the origins of her thinking in connection with her distinction between Cartesian/Euclidian and Babylonian thinking in the history of economics, discusses the further development of her views regarding open and closed systems in her 2002 Economic Methodology book and in connection with her ‘structured pluralism’ concept, discusses the 2005 paper co-authored with Victoria Chick, “The Meaning of Open Systems” examines Dow’s and Chick’s view and critique of critical realism in regard to the relationship between models and theorizing and uses Piero Sraffa’s 1930s the open-closed distinction to provide a similar understanding of such boundaries and the relationship between models and theorizing, and finally comments on Dow’s contribution to open-closed systems thinking and pluralism in economics.
Davis, John B., "(WP 2022-06) Sheila Dow's Open Systems Methodology" (2022). Economics Working Papers. 87.