Judging by the past three months, 2014 is on track to become the year of local minimum wage laws. Campaigns are under way in Richmond, Berkeley and Oakland to join San Francisco and San Jose in setting a minimum wage higher than state law. These are echoed by similar initiatives … More >
Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of participating in the second Chinese Environmental Economics workshop in Shanghai. Professor Jinhua Zhao of Michigan State and Shanghai University, one of the best PhD students I have ever advised, organized the workshop in Shanghai.
The conference facilities were modern and impressive and most … More >
Last week’s massive spill of the toxic chemical MCHM into West Virginia’s Elk River illustrates another benefit to the business class of high unemployment, economic insecurity, and a safety-net shot through with holes. Not only are employees eager to accept whatever job they can get. They are also also unwilling … More >
At the heart of the recent hard-ball negotiations between Boeing and the International Association of Machinists (IAM) is a troubling paradox: A company scores record profits and demands tough concessions from its workers.
Something is clearly wrong with this picture. While earning more and paying less may fatten the bottom line … More >
I’m glad to see Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation Evangelii Guardium featured so prominently in the media.
With a 224-page document and a 2000 year Church history, however, media coverage is bound to include some oversimplifications. One is the title of Emma Green’s piece in the Atlantic, “The Vatican’s Journey From Anti-Communism to Anti-Capitalism.” While … More >
Financial Networks and Contagion,” a recent paper by Matthew Elliott, Benjamin Golub, and Matthew Jackson, uses network theory to study how financial interdependencies among governments, central banks, investment banks, and other institutions can lead to cascading defaults and failures.
While the model is quite technical, the main theoretical findings are … More >
By now it’s well known that Target Corporation (Target) “knew a teen girl was pregnant before her father did.” Not only was the story told many times over in the New York Times, but it also became one of the lead examples illustrating the intrinsic value of “big data.” A … More >
The war isn’t over. It’s only a cease-fire.
Republicans have agreed to fund the federal government through January 15 and extend the government’s ability to borrow (raise the debt ceiling) through Feb. 7. The two sides have committed themselves to negotiate a long-term budget plan by mid-December.
Regardless of what happens in … More >
Since 1975, course evaluations at Berkeley have included the following question: Considering both the limitations and possibilities of the subject matter and course, how would you rate the overall teaching effectiveness of this instructor?
1 (not at all effective), 2, 3, 4 (moderately effective), 5, 6, 7 (extremely effective)
Among faculty, student … More >