Can economics really measure happiness?

It seems like an odd question, but what is happiness and why is it important? Do you think happiness is the same for you as it is for others? Does the definition of happiness for economics match that of our own definition of happiness? To begin, the definition of happiness from an economics perspective is the relationship between individual satisfaction and welfare such as wealth and employment. Meaning that the study relying on more expansive notions of utility and welfare, including interdependent utility functions, procedural utility, and the interaction between rational and non-rational influences in determining economic behavior. Economists measure Continue reading Can economics really measure happiness?

Why do some think that economics is not a Science?

Is it safe to assume that economics is science if some evidence leads towards it not fitting into the four branches of sciences? There are four branches of science, formal sciences, natural sciences, physical science, and social sciences. Formal sciences are known to be the study of logic and mathematics. Natural sciences are classified to be the study of natural phenomena and are divided into two branches, physical and social science. Many such as universities consider economics to be a social science but there are others that are criticizing the field not be a science. They argue that the field Continue reading Why do some think that economics is not a Science?

What is the Most Useful Idea in Economics? (Part 2)

This is part two of what UPS professors and students thought were “the most useful ideas in economics.” These next two responses were not popular answers given, however, I think that they are interesting, and may help explain more about economics in the world setting. A more interesting response I received from a student who took law and economics was the idea of transactions costs. A transaction cost is any cost incurred when participating in a market. It is all the costs incurred when you buy or do something. An example from law and econ is legal fees, but a Continue reading What is the Most Useful Idea in Economics? (Part 2)

Will You Find a Job After Graduation?

With the spring semester quickly zooming by for many seniors as they anxiously await graduation, it seemed like an appropriate time to check in on the job market and see if there are any prominent trends. After high school, there are usually much clearer career paths and organizations to reach career goals: working, higher education, military, etc… For those finishing up their undergraduate degrees, that is not always the case. This flexibility and freedom makes the post-grad job or graduate school hunt stressful. As much as we’d like to think our dream jobs are out there, sometimes the economy cannot Continue reading Will You Find a Job After Graduation?

The Rising Market of “Kidfluencers”

Recently, a growing number of “influencer” families have taken advantage of the massive gains available through collaborating with brands and posting content on social media. Instagram and Youtube are the primary platforms hosting this content, but youtube in particular provides an option to monetize posts through selling ads on videos. Companies featured in the ads pay, on average, 10-30 cents per 30 second viewing or click; this revenue is then split between youtube (45%) and the creator (55%). This translates to brands saving millions through ditching traditional forms of advertising, influencers profiting massively in minutes, and youtube reaping the benefits of Continue reading The Rising Market of “Kidfluencers”

What is the Most Useful Idea in Economics? (Part 1)

Recently I listened to a podcast called Planet Money, where they interviewed different economists. They asked them a simple yet important question: “What’s the most useful idea in economics?” They received a bunch of different answers and provided practical examples of how those concepts relate to everyday life. Economics is interesting because of the fact that economics explain how society operates and the way people behave and interact in a market setting. This podcast and question shines light on how economic ideas are used when we all make decisions in our everyday lives. That is the beauty of this discipline Continue reading What is the Most Useful Idea in Economics? (Part 1)

Patriarchs, Proclamations and Procreation, or What Professors Do on Their Sabbaticals

Students–and the rest of the world–often wonder why academics are awarded sabbatical leaves when no one else seems to have this benefit.  Well, the idea of a sabbatical is to give a faculty member time away from other responsibilities, including teaching, so they can advance their professional development.  Sabbaticals are thus typically periods of focused research. In this post, I share the example of my 2019 sabbatical in Paris. I spent this sabbatical at the Centre Population et Développement located at the Université Paris Descartes.  There, I worked with  Christophe Guilmoto (demographer) and Sara Tafuro (economist), scholars researching “missing women,” Continue reading Patriarchs, Proclamations and Procreation, or What Professors Do on Their Sabbaticals

Wealth Inequality Part 2

This is a post is part of my continuing coverage of wealth inequality Wealth Inequality is one of the largest issues facing societies around the world today, with the consequences being societal unrest and dissolution. The true scale of wealth inequality is almost hard to imagine with disparities growing increasingly large. There are multiple ways scholars/policy makers have suggested to decrease wealth inequality, but I am going to focus on two direct ones: taxing wealth, and taxing inheritance. Wealth taxes, as discussed in the previous post, are direct taxes on the assets on citizens of a country. Inheritance taxes are Continue reading Wealth Inequality Part 2

An Economic Case for Government News

In the current media landscape it can feel as if there is no escape from clickbait/hyperbole, fake news, and sensationalism. These problems seem so large that many are demanding grand government, or private sector solutions such as censorship and monitoring of news/news-like creations.  However, if we look to the past there is a much easier method for correcting some of the model day problems: publicly funded news. In the early 1900s many newspapers engaged in tactics of story fabrication/embellishment, cheap gimmicks, and badly sourced stories, in order to engage audiences. These papers, called yellow papers, were then sold for a Continue reading An Economic Case for Government News

Op-Ed: The Swamp needs Draining

Disclaimer: We all know the bureaucracy and have formed our own opinions. The author (that’s me!) has decided that he doesn’t like most bureaucracies. Therefore, the views expressed in this article are his and do not reflect the stance of Sound Economics at large. If you are a fan of bureaucracies, and/or you think this article may hit a little close to home, simply click on over to Brennan’s fantastic piece on umbrella usage. If you feel as though the above qualifiers do not apply to you, I welcome you with great excitement to continue along with me now and read Continue reading Op-Ed: The Swamp needs Draining