The Ostrom Nobel

by Henry on October 12, 2009

To amplify what Kieran has just said – political scientists are going to be very, very happy today. I had seen Lin cited as a 50-1 outsider by one betting agency a few days ago, and had been surprised that she was at the races at all, given that economists tend (like the rest of us) to be possessive of their field’s collective goodies. I’m delighted to see that my cynicism was completely misplaced. But this is also a very interesting statement of what the Nobel committee see as important in economics.

Lin’s work focuses on the empirical analysis of collective goods problems – how it is that people can come up with their own solutions to problems of the commons if they are given enough room to do so. Her landmark book, _Governing the Commons_, provides an empirical rejoinder to the pessimism of Garret Hardin and others about the tragedy of the commons – it documents how people can and do solve these problems in e.g the management of water resources, forestry, pasturage and fishing rights. She and her colleagues gather large sets of data on the conditions under which people are or are not able to solve these problems, and the kinds of rules that they come up with in order to solve them.
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Ostrom, Williamson win Econ Nobel

by Kieran Healy on October 12, 2009

I just heard this from a passing radio and initially didn’t quite believe it. Ostrom, in particular, is a terrific choice. She’s at the other end of the spectrum defined on one side by Freakonomics. Which is to say her work is not flashy, it’s very thorough, and it arrives at, you know, correct answers. I bet the Political Scientists are very, very happy today.

Bookblogging: Micro-based macro

by John Quiggin on October 12, 2009

Over the fold, yet more from my book-in-progress, Zombie Economics: Undead ideas that threaten the world economy. This is from the Beginnings section of the Chapter on Micro-based Macro, and covers the breakdown of the Phillips curve and the rise of New Classical and Rational Expectations macro. This (along with the bits to come on DGSE models) is probably the section on which my own background is weakest, so feel free to point out my errors.

I’ve now posted drafts of the first three chapters (+Intro) at my wikidot site, so you can get some context. In particular, before commenting on omissions, take a quick look to see that the point hasn’t been covered elsewhere.

Micro-based macro is here

I’ve got a lot out of comments and discussion so far, and I hope some of this is reflected in what you are reading.

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George F. What?

by John Holbo on October 12, 2009

What is your best theory about how this image was generated? (I got it from Amazon.)


Seriously. This can’t be a picture of a published book, can it? On the other hand, it’s an image of a book published in 1984, so presumably they made the image by scanning an old book. I am curious whether such a monstrosity exists in real life. It’s not just the misspelling. It’s like a full course in how not to design a book cover.