There are Free Lunches Statement of Intentions

There are Free Lunches: Behavioral Clues to Live Happy in the Economic World is a blog that intends to present updated and relevant information about the "hidden" and only recently uncovered dimensions of the economic science: the behavioral factors. With this blog we intend to promote in Europe and in the rest of the World, the top research articles and perspectives on behavioral economics, decision making, consumer behavior, and general behavioral science. We aim to be followed by journalists, academics, managers, civil servants, and everyone who wishes to improve their daily interaction with the economic world and consequently, their lives' happiness.

Monday, 10 September 2012

O2 #1 The Potentials and Limitations of Rational Choice Theory: an Interview with Gary Becker (via Simoleon Sense)

Gary S. Becker (Pennsylvania, 1930) is a university professor at the Departments of Economics, Sociology, and the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago, Illinois. Becker earned his undergraduate degree from Princeton University and was awarded a PhD by the University of Chicago in 1955 for a thesis on the economics of discrimination, under the supervision of Milton Friedman. After teaching at Columbia University from 1957 to 1969, he returned to the University of Chicago where he has been based ever since.
Becker’s work and research interests encompass a wide range of topics, unified by what he calls The economic approach to human behavior (Becker 1976). He considers this refined version of the neoclassical theory of consumer behavior as a method that can be applied to analyzing individual choices beyond the boundaries of traditional economics domains, including discrimination, education (human capital), crime, addiction, the family (marriage, divorce, fertility), and altruism. Becker’s path-breaking work has been recognized with numerous honors, including the John Bates Clark Medal (1967), and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (2007). In 1992, he was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences “for having extended the domain of microeconomic analysis to a wide range of human behavior and interaction, including non market behavior” (Nobel Prize press release). 

Professor Becker was interviewed by Catherine Herfeld at his office on the Campus of the University of Chicago on December 8th, 2010. The discussion ranged over a number of issues including the consequences of the recent financial crisis for the economics profession, the role of mathematics in economic modeling and the role of modeling in economics, the significance of the rationality-principle, and the development of Becker’s ‘economic approach’ and its distinctiveness from behavioral economics.

Read the complete interview about economics epistemology here: RationalChoice 

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