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Thursday, July 31, 2014

Useful links: Micro principles edition

  • Amazon’s explanation of their dealings with Hachette provide a great, highly-specific example of the connection between elasticity and total revenue. You could ask students to use the provided data to calculate what Amazon thinks is the price-elasticity of demand for e-books. In addition, this InsideHigherEd post raises some good points about substitutes and pricing strategies across books.
  • All Things Considered aired a story this week entitled “Why are theater tickets cheaper on the West End than on Broadway?” In discussing the price difference between tickets in New York and London, the story touches on multiple economic concepts, including economies of scale, product differentiation, price discrimination, subsidies and substitutes.
  • The next time your students ask you what they can do with an economics degree, you may want to share this article with them. It’s about how economists are increasingly being hired by tech companies to talk data and PR to customers and the media. I do have to say, I find it interesting that economists are not exactly known for their great communication skills but the article makes it sound a bit like finding economists with the skills to communicate effectively with the public is no big deal.

1 comment:

  1. Mention economics and eyes start rolling before you find yourself alone. It doesn't have to be that way. We know that our future depends on economics. How can we overcome this discrepancy? Traditionally, fundamental economics is a study– a study of the sources, uses and distribution of resources with their associated money flows. The game Bux, using cards as resources and chips as money, enables young people to experience economics. Concepts like supply-demand-pricing-value-decisions-productivity-profits-saving-timing, risk-reward... are natural and routinely applied. Once economics is felt and the analogies made, it leads to, "What kind of a game is this that has my six year-old [unusual] asking me financial strategy questions that I can't answer?"

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