Thursday , March 4 2021
Home / T. Cowen: Marginal Revolution
The author Tyler Cowen
Tyler Cowen
Tyler Cowen is an American economist, academic, and writer. He occupies the Holbert C. Harris Chair of economics as a professor at George Mason University and is co-author, with Alex Tabarrok, of the popular economics blog Marginal Revolution. Cowen and Tabarrok have also ventured into online education by starting Marginal Revolution University. He currently writes the "Economic Scene" column for the New York Times, and he also writes for such publications as The New Republic, the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Newsweek, and the Wilson Quarterly.

T. Cowen: Marginal Revolution

Causes of the sex drought

Among young men, declines in drinking frequency, an increase in computer gaming, and the growing percentage who coreside with their parents all contribute significantly to the decline in casual sex. The authors find no evidence that trends in young adults’ economic circumstances, internet use, or television watching explain the recent decline in casual sexual activity. Here is more from Scott J. South and Lei Lei, via the excellent Kevin Lewis. The post Causes of the sex drought appeared...

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Tuesday assorted links

1. Berk’s deep dive into the male/female seminar questions paper.  For women there is a hostile question every twelve seminars, so might they, at least in this regard, be treated in a more friendly manner than I have been?  And what is the measure of productivity or outputs here? 2. Ross Douthat on how to evaluate conspiracy theories (NYT). 3. Animating dead economists? 4. New John Cochrane paper on g > r and fiscal sustainability. 5. Do conversations end when people want them to?...

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Canada Moves to First Doses First

The Canadian province of British Columbia has moved to First Doses First (as I suggested they would) with a four month (not three as in Great Britain) delay on the second dose. Quebec is already using FDF. I believe that the rest of Canada will follow shortly: Also on Monday, the province announced it is extending the time between first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccine to four months. The change, as well as Health Canada’s approval of a third vaccine, means every eligible person in...

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The English Data Support First Doses First

A new study from Public Health England shows that both the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccine work well from the first dose. If that sounds familiar it’s because the results are similar to those found in Scotland. The results cover all adults in England aged 70 years and older (over 7.5 million people). Vaccination with either a single dose of BNT162b2 or ChAdOx1 COVID-19 vaccination was associated with a significant reduction in symptomatic SARS-CoV2 positive cases in older adults with...

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The Gregory Clark working paper

I wanted to present this paper to you all, here is the abstract: Economics, Sociology, and Anthropology are dominated by the belief that social outcomes depend mainly on parental investment and community socialization. Using a lineage of 402,000 English people 1750-2020 we test whether such mechanisms better predict outcomes than a simple additive genetics model. The genetics model predicts better in all cases except for the transmission of wealth. The high persistence of status over multiple...

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Higher education sentences to ponder

We find that the WTP [willingness to pay] for in-person instruction (relative to a remote format) represents around 4.2% of the average annual net cost of attending university, while the WTP for on-campus social activities is 8.1% of the average annual net costs. We also find large heterogeneity in WTP, which varies systematically across socioeconomic groups. Our analysis shows that economically-disadvantaged students derive substantially lower value from university social life, but this is...

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Monday assorted links

1. GMU Econ Society interviews me. 2. How TikTok led to a run on feta cheese (NYT). 3. “In-fight meals repurposed as bento boxes are proving popular in Japan at a time when many flights have been canceled due to sluggish demand amid the coronavirus crisis.” 4. “We find that watching Shark Tank seems to encourage people who are unfamiliar with entrepreneurship to explore it, but it does little to change an individual’s fundamental underlying propensity to be an...

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Which small changes in pandemic habits will stick?

That is the topic of my latest Bloomberg column, here is one excerpt: I for one will miss the Saturday evening Zoom meeting. Since the pandemic started, I have found it easy to schedule calls at 5:30 or 6:30, even when more than one person is involved. Everyone just says yes. Why not? You’re not going out to the movies or dinner. Even if you think Zoom calls are oppressive — especially if you think Zoom calls are oppressive — it is better to have somewhere to put your marginal Zoom call other...

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A Biden Plan for World Vaccination

Canada has approved the AstraZeneca vaccine. The US has not. The US has paid for an AstraZeneca factory in Baltimore and stockpiled millions of doses. The US should lease the factory to Canada or simply make the doses available for export. The same factory will also produce the J&J vaccine so it’s possible that there is some small opportunity cost. Exporting vaccine to our close ally, trading partner, and neighbor, however, would create significant political, economic, and health...

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