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Beyond The Dismal Science

The Passionate Science

Back in the nineteenth century Thomas Carlyle described economics as "the dismal science", a term that's been wheeled out ever since whenever some hackneyed journalist or febrile blogger feels the need to criticise something to do with money. It's a snappy little phrase, and is all too often justified.

Well, now a couple of behavioral economists have written a book that attempts to refute that label. In the words of John List and Uri Gneezy in The Why Axis: Hidden Motives and the Undiscovered Economics of Everyday Life economics is a passionate science - one that is:

"Fully engaged with the entire spectrum of the human emotions … and with the capacity to produce results that can change society for the better".

So if you want to know how to price wine correctly, or to improve the performance of students or get people to donate more money… Read More …