A Short Course in Behavioral Economics

Here’s a course for our his­tor­i­cal moment.…

Behav­ioral economics—“the study of how think­ing and emo­tions affect indi­vid­ual eco­nom­ic deci­sions and the behav­ior of markets”—is a rel­a­tive­ly new dis­ci­pline. This approach to eco­nom­ics, which mar­ries psy­chol­o­gy and eco­nom­ics and dis­cards the assump­tion that every eco­nom­ic actor is ratio­nal, was devel­oped part­ly by Richard Thaler, Direc­tor of the Cen­ter for Deci­sion Research at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Chica­go Grad­u­ate School of Busi­ness. Now, thanks to the Edge.org, you can fol­low a short class on the sub­ject. It’s taught by Thaler him­self and he’s joined by Har­vard econ­o­mist Send­hil Mul­lainathan and Nobel Lau­re­ate Daniel Kah­ne­man.

The course, deliv­ered in text and video, is being rolled out week­ly on the Edge web site in six install­ments. You can find Weeks 1 and 2 here and here. And you can check back for new install­ments here (scroll to the very bot­tom of the page.)

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