Western Illinois University: Macomb Campus
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Economics and Decision Sciences
Department of Economics and Decision Sciences
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"I keep saying the sexy job in the next ten years will be statisticians.
People think I'm joking, but who would've guessed that computer engineers would've been the sexy job of the 1990s?"
"The ability to take data - to be able to understand it, to process it,
to extract value from it, to visualize it, to communicate it's going to be a hugely important skill in the
next decades, not only at the professional level but even at the educational level for elementary school kids,
for high school kids, for college kids. Because now we really do have essentially free and ubiquitous data.
So the complimentary scarce factor is the ability to understand that data and extract value from it......
those skills - of being able to access, understand, and communicate the insights you get
from data analysis - are going to be extremely important."
"Research is formalized curiosity. It is poking and prying with a purpose."
"Samuelson was the Julia
Child of economics,
somehow teaching you the
basics and giving you
the feeling of becoming
an insider in a complex
culture all at the same
time. I loved the
Foundations. Like so
many others in my
cohort, I internalized
its view that if I
couldn’t formulate a
problem in economic
theory mathematically, I
didn’t know what I was
doing. I came to the
mathematical analysis is
not one of many ways of
doing economic theory:
It is the only way.
Economic theory is
Everything else is just
pictures and talk."
"A claim for equality of material
position can be met only by a government with totalitarian powers."
"All wealth consists of desirable things;
that is, things which satisfy human wants directly or indirectly:
but not all desirable things are reckoned as wealth."
"[T]he stern reproach that I received often for not
being quite true to the new orthodoxy of neo-Keynesianism came mostly from my thesis
supervisor - the totally brilliant but vigorously intolerant Joan Robinson."
"But I fear I could not get anyone in Trinity,
or in Cambridge, very excited in the "theory" of social choice. I had to choose
quite a different subject for my research thesis, after completing my B.A.
The thesis was on "the choice of techniques," which interested Joan Robinson
as well as Maurice Dobb."
"I have learned as much in the last three years as
in any other comparable period of my life, but with an added realisation
of how little over a half century of study one has in fact managed to learn
of the whole range of economic policy issues."
"The purpose of studying economics is not to
acquire a set of ready-made answers to economic questions,
but to learn how to avoid being deceived by economists."
"I guess I should warn you, if I turn out to be particularly
clear, you've probably misunderstood what I've said."
"In 1963 and later papers, I pointed out that the
special market characteristics of medical care and medical insurance could be
explained by reference to differences in information among the parties involved."
"I do not know which makes a man more conservative - to know
nothing but the present, or nothing but the past."