Category Archives: Uncategorized

Heterogeneous agent macroeconomics has a long history, and it raises many questions

A cornerstone of thoughtful and lazy criticisms of mainstream macroeconomics alike is the idea that macroeconomists have spent 40 years just writing infinitely lived representative agent models (in which all agents behave the same way and are eternal), and isn’t … Continue reading

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Working on 1960s macroeconometrics : there’s an echo on the line

Three years ago, a group of historians of economics embarked on a reexamination of the relationships between theoretical and empirical work in macroeconomics. Our goal was inward looking. We were not primarily looking to contribute to present discussions on the … Continue reading

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How ‘tractability’ has shaped economic knowledge: a few conjectures

Yesterday, I blogged about a question I have mulled over for years: what is the aggregate consequence of the thousands of hundreds of “I model the government’s objective function with well-behaved X social welfare-function because canonical paper Y does it” … Continue reading

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What is the cost of ‘tractable’ economic models?

Edit: here’s a follow-up post in which I clarify my definition of ‘tractability’ and my priors on this topic Economists study cycles, but they also create some. Every other month, a British heterodox economist explains why economics is broken, and other … Continue reading

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A game of mirrors? Economists’ models of the labor market and the 1970s gender reckoning

Written with Cleo Chassonnery-Zaigouche and John Singleton The underrepresentation of women in science is drawing increasing attention from scientists as well as from the media. For example, research examining glass ceilings, leaking or small pipelines, the influence of mentorship, biases … Continue reading

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Not going away: on Al Roth’s 2018 AEA Presidential Address and the ethical shyness of market designers

Encountering Al Roth’s ideas has always been a “squaring the circle” experience to me. The man is the epitome of swag (as my students would say), his ideas the hype, and his past achievements ubiquitous in the media. He has … Continue reading

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The making and dissemination of Milton Friedman’s 1967 AEA Presidential Address

Joint with Aurélien Goutsmedt In a few weeks, the famous presidential address in which Milton Friedman is remembered to have introduced the notion of an equilibrium rate of unemployment and opposed the use of the Phillips curve in macroeconomic policy … Continue reading

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