Memories and delusions on phylogenetic comparative methods in econometrics

Today, navigating among the old files in my computer, I found a text and some figures in which I tried to explain why comparative methods might be of interest for people studying macroeconomy. I just applied the same reasoning we usually do in biology: countries are not independent entities since historically they’ve had different degrees of relationships (some have arisen from some others). Therefore, the type of relationship among macroeconomic variables we usually see in graphs with a large number of countries might only reflect a random correlation product of the historical relationship among countries. I know, this kind of metaphors biology-economy (or evolution-history) are flawed and, as one of my former bosses put it once: ‘the danger of metaphors is that the better they are the less they look like a metaphor’.

That’s probably why it was among old files in my computer, where this kind of fast idea should be, and I’m happy to say that. However, because this blog is a bit of a jumble too, I thought I’d share the graphs here:

Here, ‘Felsenstein’s best case scenario’
Here, ‘Felsenstein’s worst case scenario’