Is Scientific Knowledge Useful for Policy Analysis? A Peculiar Theorem Says: No

Judea Pearl
2014 Journal of Causal Inference  
Conventional wisdom dictates that the more we know about a problem domain the easier it is to predict the effects of policies in that domain. Strangely, this wisdom is not sanctioned by formal analysis, when the notions of "knowledge" and "policy" are given concrete definitions in the context of nonparametric causal analysis. This note describes this peculiarity and speculates on its implications.
doi:10.1515/jci-2014-0017 fatcat:ra6xgtngkfh5fgh7gknlvtr264