Skidelsky, 2007

The purpose of models is not to decribe reality but to clarify the conditions under which a statement is true

Sigmund, 1993

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Models for population growth, too, are brushed aside by some ecologists as being far too simple to be real. But the models are intended as thought experiments, and not as pictures of real life. A model must be properly reduced, to the point of caricature, for the decisive elements to stand out. Such a model promises no prediction, but it offers understanding. Abstraction is always caricature: an exaggeration of essential traits, or at least an omission of irrelevant details.

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