Category Archives: Economic education and methods

Estimating consumers’ surplus from information goods

Erik Brynjolfsson, Avi Gannamaneni, and Felix Eggers have a paper on the topic. From the abstract: We explore the potential of massive online choice experiments to measure consumers’ willingness to accept compensation for losing access to various digital goods and … Continue reading

Posted in business economics, Information Goods, statistical methods, Tyler Cowen is my Favorite Blogger | 9 Comments

Complex vs. Complicated

My latest essay. When I was a graduate student in economics in the late 1970s, we were trained as if the economy is complicated, but not complex. We were told that if we learned enough mathematics and statistics and applied … Continue reading

Posted in Economic education and methods, links to my essays | 5 Comments

Complicated vs. Complex

Jordan Greenhall writes, a complicated system is defined by a finite and bounded (unchanging) set of possible dynamic states, while a complex system is defined by an infinite and unbounded (growing, evolving) set of possible dynamic states. . . .In … Continue reading

Posted in culture, Economic education and methods | 6 Comments

The game-playing society

My latest essay. During the industrial era, the key word was systematic. Factories and assembly lines turned production into a system. We invented the discipline of political economy, which analyzed the capitalist system. From Leon Walras in the 19th century … Continue reading

Posted in culture, Economic education and methods, links to my essays | 24 Comments

Inter-generational mean reversion

Tyler Cowen, among many others, is intrigued by a study by Raj Chetty and others showing downward mobility of black males. My view, which I came to in the process of reading Gregory Clark’s study of long-term heritability of income, … Continue reading

Posted in income distribution-wealth-poverty, statistical methods | 21 Comments

Clarification: the null hypothesis

A reader asked for this. The term “null hypothesis” comes from statistics. The word “null” means “no effect” and the null hypothesis is that an intervention has no effect on the outcome. If you were testing the effectiveness of a … Continue reading

Posted in statistical methods | 25 Comments

Is personality psychology just a baloney sandwich?

I say no, although it is not like physics. We are talking about modest correlations, not strict laws. What made the marshmallow test famous was the follow-up work which suggested that a child’s ability to defer gratification on the test … Continue reading

Posted in behavioral economics, statistical methods | 4 Comments

Road to Sociology Watch

Regarding a code of conduct promulgated for the American Economic Association, women in economics at Berkeley write, In order to craft an effective and appropriate Code of Conduct, the AEA must commit to a longer process that enlists and compensates … Continue reading

Posted in Economic education and methods | 5 Comments

Models, Marx, and Mises

Recently, I have made the case for updating economics in an essay and in this podcast with Russ Roberts. As I expected, I encountered resistance from three sources: people who think in terms of models; people who think in terms … Continue reading

Posted in Economic education and methods | 5 Comments

Russ Roberts and me

A podcast on Economics for the 21st century. An excerpt: And I think–I listed, in the essay, four key research areas. And one of them is what I call Firm Interaction. And this question of how the ecosystem operates now, … Continue reading

Posted in Economic education and methods, links to my essays | Tagged | 2 Comments