Campus scholars' perspectives on topical issues — in conversation with you

Irma Adelman (1930-2017): A Leading Economist and Outstanding Berkeley Faculty Member

I was very sorry to learn that Irma Adelman passed away February 24, 2017. A brilliant woman whose life story and achievements were truly awe-inspiring, Irma lived through some of the most important events of the 20th century and her research tools and ideas have impacted the lives of countless people. We were privileged to … Continue reading »

Why some startups win

If you don’t know where you’re going, how will you know when you get there? I was having a second coffee with an ex-student, now the head of a marketing inside a rapidly growing startup. His company had marched through customer discovery, learning about the customer problem, validated solutions and was now scaling sales and … Continue reading »

Why it is a bad idea to burn more coal and reduce car fuel-efficiency standards: Carbon Math 101

The new administration wants society to burn more, not less, fossil fuels in the future. If we are to cap warming at 2° C (or 3.6° F) globally, we need to establish policies that enable us to continue the development and expansion of technologies that will cap atmospheric CO2 levels below 450 parts per million … Continue reading »

The no excuses culture

Getting ready for our next semester’s class, I asked my teaching assistant why I hadn’t seen the posters for our new class around campus. Hearing the litany of excuses that followed  – “It was raining.” (The posters go inside the building.) “We still have time.” (We had agreed they were to go up a week … Continue reading »

Ken Arrow – A Great economic theorist, but an even Greater humanist

When I was an undergraduate student in Israel, I remember asking one of my professors, ‘Who is the greatest economist in the world today: Samuelson or Friedman?’ His answer surprised me: Arrow. I was embarrassed not to know him, and asked “Who?!” My professor replied, “If you go to graduate school, you’ll learn about him.” … Continue reading »