Science theorises by proposing ideal types and deducing ideal relationships between them. In nature there is no ideal sphere touching an ideal frictionless plane in an ideal single point. Instead of these ideals, nature gives us avalanches. Yet to study real avalanches the theory derived from the unreal ideal is required. Presumably, reality is too chaotic to theorise directly. Does all useful theory depend on ideal types? It does seem usual.
Economics creates idealised relational theories from idealised constructs such as homo economicus, market clearing, perfect information and other things which do not and cannot exist in reality. Presumably, this idealisation approach is one reason for the relative success of economics compared with other social sciences.
In the natural sciences measurement is also ideal. For example, a temperature noted as 23.59 degrees is not real: the reality will be plus or minus some small amount. The recorded value, like any exact number, is a mathematical abstraction. In the social sciences there are no units of measure so the only available ideal value for any concept is its total presence or total absence. In economics, the concept of rationality is perfect rationality, market clearing is absolute. Economic theories are constructed from all-or-nothing ideals.
Why don’t the other social sciences develop relational theories based on ideal types? For example: total cooperation, perfect competition, utterly forgiving nature, perfectly nice human nature, perfect selfishness, total equality, perfect justice, utter domination, complete freedom, etc, etc. Shouldn’t this be the normal approach?
Am I reinventing a philosophical (square) wheel or is this a new thought?