Economists in Trouble
Some respected economists need to lead their academic colleagues in a rethinking of the profession’s priorities. We need economics to make a bigger social contribution. As a glance at the agenda of the American Economic Association’s recent annual meeting suggests, too many of these folks spend their careers drilling down into highly quantitative trivia instead of developing fresh ideas on the broader challenges of political economy. It’s not just Wall Street that’s diverted too much of the nation’s economic talent into unproductive channels – it’s the narrow, tenure-producing but irrelevant work in too many economics departments, too.