Economics

How Alberto Alesina Challenged the Median Voter Theorem

"Alberto Alesina's insight was that the economy was driven neither by the opportunistic behavior of politicians nor by the pursuit of partisan...

Not Everyone Agreed With Alberto Alesina, but Nobody Could Ignore the Work He Did

Harvard professor Jeffry Fridel was a friend and a colleague of Alberto Alesina. They shared the beginning of their careers, a house...

Indecent Proposals in Economics: The Moral Problem With Randomized Trial Experiments

The advent of field Randomised Control Trials (RCTs) has made it more acceptable for applied economists to collect data in developing countries....

Stick, Carrot, and Evergreen Loans: A Policy Proposal to Save Small and Medium-Sized Firms

Restaurant owners, retailers, and the like employ more than 50 percent of the US workforce, yet neither have cash buffers nor access to Federal Reserve support. In...

A New Capitalisn't Episode: Did the Economists of the '60s and '70s Ruin the Economy?

Are economists to blame for our current state of affairs? That's the argument Binyamin Appelbaum makes in his book "The Economists' Hour." In this...

Do Top Economics Journals Hold Female-Authored Papers to Higher Standards?

Articles written by male economists are cited less than articles published by women in the same journals, a new study on gender and quality...

Corporations and the Rise of the Chicago Law and Economics Movement

From its birth in 1946 onward, corporations made possible and crucially supported the rise of the Chicago law and economics movement. Aaron Director,...

Fighting Poverty With Field Experiments: the Nobel Laureates' Revolution

As a student, Harvard Business School professor Vincent Pons decided to become an economist after a project in Morocco with Esther Duflo. The co-recipient...

Economics’ Lack of Interest in Gender Proves: the “Dismal Science” Really Is Dismal


Economists are still in the dark about the role of gender. For economics to be credible, we have to recognize that our knowledge is...

Standard Oil and Antitrust: the Effects of Aaron Director's Socratic Method

Aaron Director, who died 15 years ago, made important contributions to the analysis of business practices. None were ever published under his name. Professor...

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Paid to Show the Drug Works: Why “Blind” Clinical Trials for New Drugs are Far Less Blind Than They Should Be

New research shows that physicians in industry-sponsored trials are more captured by pharmaceutical companies than physicians in unsponsored ones.

Bethany McLean’s Weekend Reading List: Elder Care Facilities, Twitter, and Pot

Corruption, lobbying, corporate malfeasance, and frauds: a weekly unconventional selection of must-read articles by investigative journalist Bethany McLean. 

It Is Such a Small World: The Market-Design Academic Community Evolved in a Business Network

Private equity funds such as Michael Dell's MSD Capital made hundreds of millions of dollars in profits from the 2017 FCC spectrum...

How Market Design Economists Helped to Engineer a Mass Privatization of Public Resources

In 2017, the Federal Communications Commission conducted a complex two-sided auction to reallocate spectrum from broadcasters to mobile communications companies. The way...

How Alberto Alesina Challenged the Median Voter Theorem

"Alberto Alesina's insight was that the economy was driven neither by the opportunistic behavior of politicians nor by the pursuit of partisan...