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EconTalk Archives, 2007

Updated 4 days ago

Education
Courses
Science
Social Sciences
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EconTalk is an award-winning weekly talk show about economics in daily life. Featured guests include renowned economics professors, Nobel Prize winners, and exciting speakers on all kinds of topical matters related to economic thought. Topics include health care, free trade, economic growth, education, finance, politics, sports, book reviews, parenting, and the curiosities of everyday decision-making. Russ Roberts, of the Library of Economics and Liberty and George Mason U., draws you in with lively guests and creative repartee. Look for related readings and the complete archive of previous shows at EconTalk.org, where you can also comment on the podcasts and ask questions.

Read more

EconTalk is an award-winning weekly talk show about economics in daily life. Featured guests include renowned economics professors, Nobel Prize winners, and exciting speakers on all kinds of topical matters related to economic thought. Topics include health care, free trade, economic growth, education, finance, politics, sports, book reviews, parenting, and the curiosities of everyday decision-making. Russ Roberts, of the Library of Economics and Liberty and George Mason U., draws you in with lively guests and creative repartee. Look for related readings and the complete archive of previous shows at EconTalk.org, where you can also comment on the podcasts and ask questions.

iTunes Ratings

23 Ratings
Average Ratings
21
1
0
0
1

Humbled

By Tennessee Bud - Aug 10 2017
Read more
Regardless of the number of times I listen to the podcasts I always learn something new. The quality of the guests, and the approach Russ takes in the interview, has grown on me, yet it is fresh and I never know where we will go. Much more than economics!!

Exceptional discourse

By Djtrai04 - Oct 27 2015
Read more
I spent 4 years on an economics degree and these discussions are far more valuable than the 2 years of school specifically related to the field. Wonderful guests from the worlds of finance, Econ, tech and others. Can't recommend this podcast enough.

iTunes Ratings

23 Ratings
Average Ratings
21
1
0
0
1

Humbled

By Tennessee Bud - Aug 10 2017
Read more
Regardless of the number of times I listen to the podcasts I always learn something new. The quality of the guests, and the approach Russ takes in the interview, has grown on me, yet it is fresh and I never know where we will go. Much more than economics!!

Exceptional discourse

By Djtrai04 - Oct 27 2015
Read more
I spent 4 years on an economics degree and these discussions are far more valuable than the 2 years of school specifically related to the field. Wonderful guests from the worlds of finance, Econ, tech and others. Can't recommend this podcast enough.
Cover image of EconTalk Archives, 2007

EconTalk Archives, 2007

Latest release on Dec 24, 2007

Read more

EconTalk is an award-winning weekly talk show about economics in daily life. Featured guests include renowned economics professors, Nobel Prize winners, and exciting speakers on all kinds of topical matters related to economic thought. Topics include health care, free trade, economic growth, education, finance, politics, sports, book reviews, parenting, and the curiosities of everyday decision-making. Russ Roberts, of the Library of Economics and Liberty and George Mason U., draws you in with lively guests and creative repartee. Look for related readings and the complete archive of previous shows at EconTalk.org, where you can also comment on the podcasts and ask questions.

Rank #1: Michael Lewis on the Hidden Economics of Baseball and Football

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Michael Lewis talks about the economics of sports--the financial and decision-making side of baseball and football--using the insights from his bestselling books on baseball and football: Moneyball and The Blind Side. Along the way he discusses the implications of Moneyball for the movie business and other industries, the peculiar ways that Moneyball influenced the strategies of baseball teams, the corruption of college football, and the challenge and tragedy of kids who live on the streets with little education or prospects for success.

Jan 29 2007

1hr 15mins

Play

Rank #2: Greg Mankiw on Gasoline Taxes, Keynes and Macroeconomics

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Greg Mankiw of Harvard University and Greg Mankiw's Blog talks about the state of modern macroeconomics and Keynes vs. the Chicago School. He defends his proposal to raise gasoline taxes and discusses the politics of tax policy.

Jan 22 2007

1hr

Play

Rank #3: Bogle on Investing

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The legendary John Bogle, founder of the Vanguard Group and creator of the index mutual fund, talks about the Great Depression, the riskiness of bond funds, how he created the Index 500 mutual fund--now the largest single mutual fund in the world--how the study of economics changed his life and ours, and Sarbanes-Oxley. At the end of the conversation, he reflects on his life and career.

Apr 09 2007

58mins

Play

Rank #4: Sunstein on Worst-case Scenarios

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Read more
Cass Sunstein of the University of Chicago talks about the ideas in his latest book, Worst-Case Scenarios. How should individuals and societies cope with low-probability events with potentially catastrophic consequences? In this conversation with EconTalk host Russ Roberts, Sunstein discusses the uselessness of the precautionary principle as a guide to behavior and the psychological challenges we all face in coping with uncertain, risky events. He also speculates why we have chosen politically to treat terrorism and global warming so differently.

Nov 19 2007

1hr 4mins

Play

Rank #5: Arnold Kling on the Economics of Health Care and the Crisis of Abundance

Podcast cover
Read more
Arnold Kling of EconLog talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the economics of health care and his book, A Crisis of Abundance: Rethinking How We Pay for Health Care. Kling discusses whether we get what we pay for when we spend money on health care, why health care isn't like cars, and why health care insurance isn't really insurance. The conversation closes with a discussion of innovation in America's health care system and why America is so unlike everywhere else.

Nov 05 2007

58mins

Play

Rank #6: Boudreaux on Market Failure, Government Failure and the Economics of Antitrust Regulation

Podcast cover
Read more
Don Boudreaux of George Mason University talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about when market failure can be improved by government intervention. After discussing the evolution of economic thinking about externalities and public goods, the conversation turns to the case for government's role in promoting competition via antitrust regulation. Boudreaux argues that the origins of antitrust had nothing to do with protecting consumers from greedy monopolists. The source of political demand for antitrust regulation came from competitors looking for relief from more successful rivals.

Oct 01 2007

1hr 6mins

Play

Rank #7: Romer on Growth

Podcast cover
Read more
Paul Romer, Stanford University professor and Hoover Institution Senior Fellow talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about growth, China, innovation, and the role of human capital. Also discussed are ideas in creating growth, the idea that ideas allow for increasing returns, and intellectual property and how it should be treated. This 75 minute podcast is a wonderful introduction to thinking about what creates and sustains our standard of living in the modern world.

Aug 27 2007

1hr 17mins

Play

Rank #8: Weingast on Violence, Power and a Theory of Nearly Everything

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Barry Weingast, Senior Fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution and the Ward C. Krebs Family Professor in the Department of Political Science at Stanford University, talks about the ideas in his forthcoming book with Doug North and John Wallis, A Conceptual Framework for Interpreting Recorded Human History. Weingast talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about how violence shapes political institutions, the role of competition in politics and economics, and why most development advice from successful nations fails to lift poor nations out of poverty.

Aug 13 2007

1hr 5mins

Play

Rank #9: Robert Frank on Economics Education and the Economic Naturalist

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Author Robert Frank of Cornell University talks about economic education and his recent book, The Economic Naturalist. Frank argues that the traditional way of teaching economics via graphs and equations often fails to make any impression on students. In this conversation with host Russ Roberts, Frank outlines an alternative approach from his new book, where students find interesting questions and enigmas from everyday life. They then try to explain them using the economic way of thinking. Frank and Roberts discuss a number of the enigmas and speculate on the future of economics and education. The topics discussed include tuxedos vs. wedding dresses, the level of civility (or lack thereof) in New York City, the difference between vending machines for soda and newspapers, the tragedy of the commons, and the economics of love.

Oct 15 2007

1hr 9mins

Play

Rank #10: Mike Munger on the Division of Labor

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Mike Munger of Duke University and EconTalk host Russ Roberts talk about specialization, the role of technology in aiding specialization and how the division of labor creates wealth.

Apr 02 2007

1hr 1min

Play

Rank #11: Cowen on Your Inner Economist

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Tyler Cowen, of George Mason University, talks about his new book, Discover Your Inner Economist: Use Incentives to Fall in Love, Survive Your Next Meeting, and Motivate Your Dentist. Cowen, legendary blogger at MarginalRevolution.com, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the economics of parenting, reading, dentistry, art museums and education. Highlights include Tyler's favorite art museum and what to see there along with the challenges of being a tourist in Morocco.

Sep 10 2007

58mins

Play

Rank #12: Grab Bag: Munger and Roberts on Recycling, Peak Oil and Steroids

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Mike Munger, of Duke University, and EconTalk host Russ Roberts clean up some loose ends from their previous conversation on recycling, move on to talk about the idea of buying local to reduce one's carbon footprint and then talk about the idea of peak oil. They close the conversation with the Rick Ankiel story and the implications for the Barry Bonds saga.

Sep 24 2007

1hr 5mins

Play

Rank #13: Epstein on Property Rights, Zoning and Kelo

Podcast cover
Read more
Richard Epstein, of the University of Chicago and Stanford's Hoover Institution, makes the case that many current zoning restrictions are essentially "takings" and property owners should receive compensation for the lost value of their land. He also discusses the Kelo case and the political economy of the regulation of land.

Sep 17 2007

41mins

Play

Rank #14: Henry Aaron on Health Care Costs

Podcast cover
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In this bonus middle-of-the-week podcast, Henry Aaron of the Brookings Institution talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about health care costs. Researchers in a New England Journal of Medicine article have estimated that the US could save $209 billion if the US went to a single-payer system like Canada. Is this number reliable? Aaron takes a deeper look at the estimate and discusses the relevance of such estimates for health care policy. This is a special mid-week podcast. It's a follow-up to an earlier podcast with Arnold Kling that raised the issue of administrative costs and potential savings from going to a single-payer system. It also ties in with recent discussions here at EconTalk about the challenges of accurate measurement in the social sciences. We hope you enjoy it. If not, come back Monday when our regular schedule resumes.

Nov 15 2007

39mins

Play

Rank #15: George Shultz on Economics, Human Rights and the Fall of the Soviet Union

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George Shultz, the Thomas W. and Susan B. Ford Distinguished Fellow at Stanford's Hoover Institution and Secretary of State under Ronald Reagan, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the role of economics in his career, the tension between morality and pragmatism in foreign policy, and the role of personalities and economics in diplomacy, particularly in US/Soviet relations in the 1980s.

Sep 03 2007

35mins

Play

Rank #16: Waldfogel on Markets, Choice, and the Tyranny of the Market

Podcast cover
Read more
Joel Waldfogel of the Wharton School of Business talks about the idea in his new book, The Tyranny of Markets: Why You Can't Always Get What You Want. He argues that when fixed costs are large, markets don't necessarily give people what they want and that, analogous to the political process, you can be hurt as the number of people with preferences that differ from yours gets larger. Host Russ Roberts challenges Waldfogel's claim that these phenomena are widespread and argues that in many cases, markets ultimately solve these problems. They discuss the amount of variety in newspapers, radio, and airline travel, along with how economics generally looks at fixed costs and consumer sovereignty.

Nov 12 2007

51mins

Play

Rank #17: Lucas on Growth and Poverty

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Bob Lucas, Nobel Laureate and professor of economics at the University of Chicago talks about wealth and poverty, what affects living standards around the world and over time, the causes of business cycles and the role of the money in our economy. Along the way, he talks about Jane Jacobs, immigration, and Milton Friedman's influence on his career.

Feb 05 2007

48mins

Play

Rank #18: Bruce Bueno de Mesquita on Democracies and Dictatorships

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Bruce Bueno de Mesquita of NYU and Stanford University's Hoover Institution talks about the incentives facing dictators and democratic leaders. Both have to face competition from rivals. Both try to please their constituents and cronies to stay in power. He applies his insights to foreign aid, the Middle East, Venezuela, the potential for China's evolution to a more democratic system, and Cuba. Along the way, he explains why true democracy is more than just elections--it depends crucially on freedom of assembly and freedom of the press.

Feb 12 2007

1hr 6mins

Play

Rank #19: Gordon on Ants, Humans, the Division of Labor and Emergent Order

Podcast cover
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Deborah M. Gordon, Professor of Biological Sciences at Stanford University, is an authority on ants and order that emerges without control or centralized authority. The conversation begins with what might be called the economics of ant colonies, how they manage to be organized without an organizer, the division of labor and the role of tradeoffs. The discussion then turns to the implications for human societies and the similarities and differences between human and natural orders.

Aug 21 2007

1hr 6mins

Play

Rank #20: Ayres on Super Crunchers and the Power of Data

Podcast cover
Read more
Ian Ayres of Yale University Law School talks about the ideas in his new book, Super Crunchers: Why Thinking-by-Numbers Is the New Way to Be Smart. Ayres argues for the power of data and analysis over more traditional decision-making methods using judgment and intuition. He talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about predicting the quality of wine based on climate and rainfall, the increasing use of randomized data in the world of business, the use of evidence and information in medicine rather than the judgment of your doctor, and whether concealed handguns or car protection devices such as LoJack reduce the crime rate. The podcast closes with a postscript by Roberts challenging the use of sophisticated statistical techniques to analyze complex systems.

Oct 22 2007

1hr 2mins

Play

Duggan on Strategic Intuition

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William Duggan, professor of management at Columbia Business School at Columbia University, talks about his latest book, Strategic Intuition. Duggan critiques traditional methods of strategy and planning and suggests that the opportunism and adaptability are more productive detailed plans. He also discusses the nature of intuition and creativity along with insights into how the brain works to better understand problem-solving.

Dec 24 2007

55mins

Play

Karol Boudreaux on Property Rights and Incentives in Africa

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Karol Boudreaux, Senior Research Fellow at George Mason University's Mercatus Center, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about her field work and research in Rwanda and South Africa. In Rwanda, she studied how a change in incentives and property rights for coffee farmers has allowed the coffee bean growers to improve quality and prosper. In South Africa's Langa Township, she looked at how renters were allowed to become homeowners and how the ability to own changed their lives.

Dec 17 2007

1hr

Play

Boettke on Austrian Economics

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Pete Boettke, of George Mason University, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the origins and tenets of Austrian economics. This is a wonderful introduction to how the so-called Austrian economists look at the world and how they continue to influence economics today.

Dec 10 2007

1hr 17mins

Play

Munger on Fair Trade and Free Trade

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Mike Munger, frequent guest and longtime Econlib contributor, speaks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about fair trade coffee and free trade agreements. Does the premium for fair trade coffee end up in the hands of the grower? What economic forces might stop that from happening? They discuss the business strategy of using higher wages as a marketing strategy to attract concerned consumers. They turn to the issue of free trade agreements. If the ideal situation is open borders to foreign products, is it still worthwhile to negotiate bilateral and multilateral agreements that requires delays, exemptions and a bureaucracy to enforce? What is the cost of including environmental and various labor market regulations in these agreements?

Dec 03 2007

58mins

Play

Botkin on Nature, the Environment and Global Warming

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Daniel Botkin, ecologist and author, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about how we think about our role as humans in the natural world, the dynamic nature of environmental reality and the implications for how we react to global warming.

Nov 26 2007

1hr 6mins

Play

Sunstein on Worst-case Scenarios

Podcast cover
Read more
Cass Sunstein of the University of Chicago talks about the ideas in his latest book, Worst-Case Scenarios. How should individuals and societies cope with low-probability events with potentially catastrophic consequences? In this conversation with EconTalk host Russ Roberts, Sunstein discusses the uselessness of the precautionary principle as a guide to behavior and the psychological challenges we all face in coping with uncertain, risky events. He also speculates why we have chosen politically to treat terrorism and global warming so differently.

Nov 19 2007

1hr 4mins

Play

Henry Aaron on Health Care Costs

Podcast cover
Read more
In this bonus middle-of-the-week podcast, Henry Aaron of the Brookings Institution talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about health care costs. Researchers in a New England Journal of Medicine article have estimated that the US could save $209 billion if the US went to a single-payer system like Canada. Is this number reliable? Aaron takes a deeper look at the estimate and discusses the relevance of such estimates for health care policy. This is a special mid-week podcast. It's a follow-up to an earlier podcast with Arnold Kling that raised the issue of administrative costs and potential savings from going to a single-payer system. It also ties in with recent discussions here at EconTalk about the challenges of accurate measurement in the social sciences. We hope you enjoy it. If not, come back Monday when our regular schedule resumes.

Nov 15 2007

39mins

Play

Waldfogel on Markets, Choice, and the Tyranny of the Market

Podcast cover
Read more
Joel Waldfogel of the Wharton School of Business talks about the idea in his new book, The Tyranny of Markets: Why You Can't Always Get What You Want. He argues that when fixed costs are large, markets don't necessarily give people what they want and that, analogous to the political process, you can be hurt as the number of people with preferences that differ from yours gets larger. Host Russ Roberts challenges Waldfogel's claim that these phenomena are widespread and argues that in many cases, markets ultimately solve these problems. They discuss the amount of variety in newspapers, radio, and airline travel, along with how economics generally looks at fixed costs and consumer sovereignty.

Nov 12 2007

51mins

Play

Arnold Kling on the Economics of Health Care and the Crisis of Abundance

Podcast cover
Read more
Arnold Kling of EconLog talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the economics of health care and his book, A Crisis of Abundance: Rethinking How We Pay for Health Care. Kling discusses whether we get what we pay for when we spend money on health care, why health care isn't like cars, and why health care insurance isn't really insurance. The conversation closes with a discussion of innovation in America's health care system and why America is so unlike everywhere else.

Nov 05 2007

58mins

Play

Yandle on the Tragedy of the Commons and the Implications for Environmental Regulation

Podcast cover
Read more
Bruce Yandle of Clemson University and George Mason University's Mercatus Center looks at the tragedy of the commons and the various ways that people have avoided the overuse of resources that are held in common. Examples discussed include fisheries, roads, rivers and the air. Yandle talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the historical use of norms, cooperative ventures such as incorporating a river, the common law, and top-down command-and-control regulation to reduce air and water pollution.

Oct 29 2007

1hr 24mins

Play

Ayres on Super Crunchers and the Power of Data

Podcast cover
Read more
Ian Ayres of Yale University Law School talks about the ideas in his new book, Super Crunchers: Why Thinking-by-Numbers Is the New Way to Be Smart. Ayres argues for the power of data and analysis over more traditional decision-making methods using judgment and intuition. He talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about predicting the quality of wine based on climate and rainfall, the increasing use of randomized data in the world of business, the use of evidence and information in medicine rather than the judgment of your doctor, and whether concealed handguns or car protection devices such as LoJack reduce the crime rate. The podcast closes with a postscript by Roberts challenging the use of sophisticated statistical techniques to analyze complex systems.

Oct 22 2007

1hr 2mins

Play

Robert Frank on Economics Education and the Economic Naturalist

Podcast cover
Read more
Author Robert Frank of Cornell University talks about economic education and his recent book, The Economic Naturalist. Frank argues that the traditional way of teaching economics via graphs and equations often fails to make any impression on students. In this conversation with host Russ Roberts, Frank outlines an alternative approach from his new book, where students find interesting questions and enigmas from everyday life. They then try to explain them using the economic way of thinking. Frank and Roberts discuss a number of the enigmas and speculate on the future of economics and education. The topics discussed include tuxedos vs. wedding dresses, the level of civility (or lack thereof) in New York City, the difference between vending machines for soda and newspapers, the tragedy of the commons, and the economics of love.

Oct 15 2007

1hr 9mins

Play

McCraw on Schumpeter, Innovation, and Creative Destruction

Podcast cover
Read more
Thomas McCraw of Harvard University talks about the ideas of Joseph Schumpeter from his book, Prophet of Innovation: Joseph Schumpeter and Creative Destruction. McCraw and EconTalk host Russ Roberts discuss innovation, business strategy, the role of mathematics in economics, and Schumpeter's vision of competition embodied in his most important idea--creative destruction.

Oct 08 2007

1hr 6mins

Play

Boudreaux on Market Failure, Government Failure and the Economics of Antitrust Regulation

Podcast cover
Read more
Don Boudreaux of George Mason University talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about when market failure can be improved by government intervention. After discussing the evolution of economic thinking about externalities and public goods, the conversation turns to the case for government's role in promoting competition via antitrust regulation. Boudreaux argues that the origins of antitrust had nothing to do with protecting consumers from greedy monopolists. The source of political demand for antitrust regulation came from competitors looking for relief from more successful rivals.

Oct 01 2007

1hr 6mins

Play

Grab Bag: Munger and Roberts on Recycling, Peak Oil and Steroids

Podcast cover
Read more
Mike Munger, of Duke University, and EconTalk host Russ Roberts clean up some loose ends from their previous conversation on recycling, move on to talk about the idea of buying local to reduce one's carbon footprint and then talk about the idea of peak oil. They close the conversation with the Rick Ankiel story and the implications for the Barry Bonds saga.

Sep 24 2007

1hr 5mins

Play

Epstein on Property Rights, Zoning and Kelo

Podcast cover
Read more
Richard Epstein, of the University of Chicago and Stanford's Hoover Institution, makes the case that many current zoning restrictions are essentially "takings" and property owners should receive compensation for the lost value of their land. He also discusses the Kelo case and the political economy of the regulation of land.

Sep 17 2007

41mins

Play

Cowen on Your Inner Economist

Podcast cover
Read more
Tyler Cowen, of George Mason University, talks about his new book, Discover Your Inner Economist: Use Incentives to Fall in Love, Survive Your Next Meeting, and Motivate Your Dentist. Cowen, legendary blogger at MarginalRevolution.com, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the economics of parenting, reading, dentistry, art museums and education. Highlights include Tyler's favorite art museum and what to see there along with the challenges of being a tourist in Morocco.

Sep 10 2007

58mins

Play

George Shultz on Economics, Human Rights and the Fall of the Soviet Union

Podcast cover
Read more
George Shultz, the Thomas W. and Susan B. Ford Distinguished Fellow at Stanford's Hoover Institution and Secretary of State under Ronald Reagan, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the role of economics in his career, the tension between morality and pragmatism in foreign policy, and the role of personalities and economics in diplomacy, particularly in US/Soviet relations in the 1980s.

Sep 03 2007

35mins

Play

Romer on Growth

Podcast cover
Read more
Paul Romer, Stanford University professor and Hoover Institution Senior Fellow talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about growth, China, innovation, and the role of human capital. Also discussed are ideas in creating growth, the idea that ideas allow for increasing returns, and intellectual property and how it should be treated. This 75 minute podcast is a wonderful introduction to thinking about what creates and sustains our standard of living in the modern world.

Aug 27 2007

1hr 17mins

Play

Gordon on Ants, Humans, the Division of Labor and Emergent Order

Podcast cover
Read more
Deborah M. Gordon, Professor of Biological Sciences at Stanford University, is an authority on ants and order that emerges without control or centralized authority. The conversation begins with what might be called the economics of ant colonies, how they manage to be organized without an organizer, the division of labor and the role of tradeoffs. The discussion then turns to the implications for human societies and the similarities and differences between human and natural orders.

Aug 21 2007

1hr 6mins

Play

iTunes Ratings

23 Ratings
Average Ratings
21
1
0
0
1

Humbled

By Tennessee Bud - Aug 10 2017
Read more
Regardless of the number of times I listen to the podcasts I always learn something new. The quality of the guests, and the approach Russ takes in the interview, has grown on me, yet it is fresh and I never know where we will go. Much more than economics!!

Exceptional discourse

By Djtrai04 - Oct 27 2015
Read more
I spent 4 years on an economics degree and these discussions are far more valuable than the 2 years of school specifically related to the field. Wonderful guests from the worlds of finance, Econ, tech and others. Can't recommend this podcast enough.