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TEDxMidAtlantic

Tyler Cowen: Be suspicious of stories

November 9, 2009

Like all of us, economist Tyler Cowen loves a good story. But in this intriguing talk, he asks us to step away from thinking of our lives -- and our messy, complicated irrational world -- in terms of a simple narrative. (Filmed at TEDxMidAtlantic.)

Tyler Cowen - Economist
In his work, economist Tyler Cowen looks at clues from pop culture, art, food, to gather data and make observations on the world's globalizing culture and commerce. Full bio

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Double-click the English subtitles below to play the video.

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Tyler Cowen - Economist
In his work, economist Tyler Cowen looks at clues from pop culture, art, food, to gather data and make observations on the world's globalizing culture and commerce.

Why you should listen

Tyler Cowen is a professor of economics at George Mason University, and partners with Alex Tabarrok to write the economics blog Marginal Revolution, where he hunts for clues to whatever is coming next, in the space where economics and culture entwine. His outlook is fairly libertarian, but it's not ivory-tower -- in fact, he's been accused of "cute-o-nomics" for daring to use economic models to explain real-world problems instead of theoretical abstractions.

His latest book is a short ebook called The Great Stagnation: How America Ate All the Low-Hanging Fruit of Modern History, Got Sick, and Will (Eventually) Feel Better. In it, he suggests that while the days of easy growth are probably over for the US, it's probably not in a death spiral just yet.

Cowen is also a passionate foodie (check out his blog Tyler Cowen's Ethnic Dining Guide); in fact, his next book is An Economist Gets Lunch: New Rules for Everyday Foodies.

Find a transcript for Tyler Cowen's TEDxMidAtlantic talk on lesswrong.com >>

The original video is available on TED.com
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