Paul Lachine

A People’s Economics

The financial crisis has deflated professional economists' scientific pretensions, because they failed to predict it. Part of the process of pursuing the inexact aspects of economics must be speaking honestly to the broader public, learning from them, and then searching one’s soul to decide whether one's favored theory is really close to the truth.

NEW HAVEN – We are in the midst of a boom in popular economics: books, articles, blogs, public lectures, all followed closely by the general public.

I recently participated in a panel discussion of this phenomenon at the American Economic Association annual meeting in Denver. An apparent paradox emerged from the discussion: the boom in popular economics comes at a time when the general public seems to have lost faith in professional economists, because almost all of us failed to predict, or even warn of, the current economic crisis, the biggest since the Great Depression.

So, why is the public buying more books by professional economists?

We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.

To continue reading, subscribe now.

Subscribe

Get unlimited access to PS premium content, including in-depth commentaries, book reviews, exclusive interviews, On Point, the Big Picture, the PS Archive, and our annual year-ahead magazine.

http://prosyn.org/1KsWxST;

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.