Archive for the ‘Economics’ category

Fear the Boom and Bust

2010.01.29

Via NPR’s Planet Money:

a story about a cable tv producer from New Jersey, a podcasting libertarian economist, an international pop superstar and the two dead economists who brought them all together.

The Planet Money podcast is highly recommended. Always interesting and never failing to inform or make you think about economics in new ways.

The Tragicomedy of the Surfers’ Commons

2008.06.30

Lunada Bay

Daniel Nazer’s interesting paper The Tragicomedy of the Surfers’ Commons examines surfing through an economic lens.  More specifically, not surfing as an industry (equipment, contests, apparel, or media), but as an activity with a finite resource: surf spots.  Nazer suggests certain parallels (and differences) with the tragedy of the commons and resource management via surfing’s social norms, and localism in particular.

Biological market theory

2008.01.08

Discovered this branch of science today via the TIME article Do Monkeys Pay For Sex? (How can you resist a link like that?)

Biological market theory applies economic theory to studies of behavior – in this case males trading grooming for sex with female Indonesian macaques (by the male macaques, not researchers… har), and how the grooming exchange rate decreased as the number of available females increased. Supply and demand. See the original paper by Michael D. Gumert, “Payment for sex in the macaque mating market“.

Update: 2009.10.22

NPR did a story for their Planet MonkeyMoney podcast about vervet monkeys in Africa demonstrating economic market behavior with grooming and access to apples. Yet another reason to recommend the Planet Money podcasts.

[image courtesy of wwarby]