Re: poly: Econ, the final frontier...

From: Robin Hanson <>
Date: Wed Jan 07 1998 - 09:50:58 PST

Anders asks:
>... So, how to ameliorate the situation? How to get a
>socio-economical basic education?

Read textbooks, the most advanced ones your math will let you
handle. (Browse top university bookstores.)
Then browse the top journals.

Tim May repeats himself:
>I've said it before, and I'll say it again: the invite list seems
>drastically overweighted in favor of "Extropians" and ex-Extropians. Is it
>any surprise that the major topics which generate interest are living
>forever, colonizing all space,

I'll just say this once: If you know of other sharp but far from Extropian
thinkers we should invite, please recommend them! If you know of other
topics you think list members will be interested in discussing, but for
some reason have a mental block against raising, please suggest them!

Curt Adams writes:
>Well, my bachelor's is in economics, and I would indeed say that social
>science is short in empiricism. The harder sciences are full of
>empirical tests so convincing that they shove unpopular theories
>down opponent's throats, but such things are rare in social science.

1. More total research effort has gone into the "harder" sciences.
2. Social processes may just be more complex and harder to understand.
3. People have much stronger preconceptions about social things.
I think the current distribution of effort into various sorts of empirics
and theory in economics is roughly about right.

Robin Hanson
RWJF Health Policy Scholar, Sch. of Public Health 510-643-1884
140 Warren Hall, UC Berkeley, CA 94720-7360 FAX: 510-643-8614
Received on Wed Jan 7 17:43:12 1998

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