As exampled by the work of Nassau William Senior (1790-1864), and English economists John Stuart Mill (1806-1873) and John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946), economic methodology is the process by which economics is explained: the philosophy of science applied to economics.
In the 19th century, British economists examined the premises of economic theory, arguing that the verification of economic theory was hazardous at best.
Today, there is debate as to how useful methodology is in the training of modern economists. MARK BLAUG has argued that economic methodology can set the criteria for the acceptance and rejection of research programs. Empirical testing has become an integral part of 20th century economic study.
M Blaug, The Methodology of Economics, or How Economists Explain (Cambridge and New York, 1980);
Joseph A Schumpeter, History of Economic Analysis (New York, 1957)