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economics

Five Minutes with Hamid Ekbia and Bonnie Nardi

Five Minutes with Hamid Ekbia and Bonnie Nardi

The computerization of the economy—and everyday life—has transformed the division of labor between humans and machines, shifting many people into work that is hidden, poorly compensated, or accepted as part of being a “user” of digital technology. In Heteromation, And Other Stories Of Computing And Capitalism, Hamid Ekbia and Bonnie Nardi explore this phenomenon and its implications.

Big Data and the Future of Entertainment Part 1

Big Data and the Future of Entertainment Part 1

Shake off some of that Labor Day rust by checking out the first part of a Q & A with Mike Smith and Rahul Telang who are the authors of Streaming, Sharing, Stealing: Big Data and the Future of Entertainment. Their book is about how big data is transforming the creative industries, and how those industries can use lessons from Netflix, Amazon, and Apple to fight back.

Angus Deaton Wins the Nobel Prize in Economics

Angus Deaton Wins the Nobel Prize in Economics

This week the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences to Angus Deaton "for his analysis of consumption, poverty, and welfare." Last year Professor Deaton and nine other distinguished economists offered their visions of the future in In 100 Years. In the following excerpt from the book, Deaton predicts the future of health. 

Big Data and the Future of Entertainment Part 2

Big Data and the Future of Entertainment Part 2

Last week we posted the first part of a Q & A with Mike Smith and Rahul Teland, coauthors of Streaming, Sharing, Stealing:Big Data and the Future of Entertainment. Here's part 2:

Why has Big Data disrupted the entertainment industry more rapidly and with greater consequence than most other industries?

The two main reasons are access to data and culture. Think about the story Michael Lewis tells in Moneyball. Billy Beane’s decision to replace gut feel decision-making with data-driven decision-making required huge changes in the Oakland A’s organizational culture, and huge innovations in analytics. His leadership changed the game, but it only gave Oakland a year or two of competitive advantage. Everyone else in the league soon caught up.

The Invisible Heart

The Invisible Heart

Happy Valentine's Day! To celebrate, enjoy the following excerpt from Russell Roberts's The Invisible Heart: An Economic Romance.

George Sutherland rubs his eyes and goes over to the rusty basin in the corner of his motel room in hopes of finding a little bit of hot water this morning. He is sick of Mexico. Sick of the dirt, sick of his job, and sick with longing for his wife and children back in Ohio. He has been in Mexico for almost four months, two months overseeing the construction of the HealthNet factory that has taken the place of the one in Matalon and two months making sure everything is running smoothly. In a week he will turn the plant over to the new permanent manager.

Bengt Holmström and Oliver Hart win the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences

Bengt Holmström and Oliver Hart win the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences

This month MIT Press authors Bengt Holmström and Oliver Hart were award the Nobel Prize for their research in contract theory. In this post, economics acquisitions editor Emily Taber reflects on how their published works help make sense of our modern world.

On October 10, 2016, Bengt Holmström was awarded the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel. He became the fifth member of the MIT economics department and the latest in a long line of MIT Press authors to earn the prize.

Holmström was awarded jointly with Oliver Hart at Harvard for their work in contract theory. While they were not frequent collaborators, their individual research in this area beginning in the 1970s and 1980s set the stage for contract theory to become a significant field of study.

The Townsend Thai Project

The Townsend Thai Project

Running since 1997 and continuing today, the Townsend Thai Project has tracked millions of observations about the economic activities of households and institutions in rural and urban Thailand. The project represents one of the most extensive datasets in the developing world. Chronicles from the Field by Robert M. Townsend, Sombat Sakunthasathien, and Rob Jordan offers an account of the design and implementation of this unique panel data survey.