Wendy Carlin and Sam Bowles at Her Majesty's Treasury
Virtual Discussion
  US Mountain Time
Sam Bowles and Wendy Carlin

This private event will take place at 10:00 am US Mountain Time.

In this hour-long virtual discussion, Sam Bowles and Wendy Carlin will explore how the pandemic could change our economic narrative, expressing new everyday understandings of how the economy works and how it should work. You can find their recently published paper here and jointly-written op-ed in the Financial Times here.



Like the Great Depression and WWII, the COVID-19 pandemic (along with climate change) will alter how we think about the economy and public policy, not only in seminars and policy think tanks, but also in the everyday vernacular by which people talk about their livelihoods and futures. It will likely prompt a leftward shift on the government-versus-markets axis. But more important, it may overturn that anachronistic one-dimensional menu of policy alternatives by including approaches drawing on social values going beyond compliance and material gain to include ethical motivations of solidarity and duty that underpin community.



Samuel Bowles, (PhD, Economics, Harvard University, 1965) is Research Professor at the Santa Fe Institute where he heads the Behavioral Sciences Program. He taught economics at Harvard from 1965 to 1973 and since then at the University of Massachusetts, where he is now emeritus professor and at the University of Siena. His studies on cultural and genetic evolution have challenged the conventional economic assumption that people are motivated entirely by self-interest. Recent papers have also explored how organizations, communities and nations could be better governed in light of the fact that altruistic and ethical motives are common in most populations. Bowles' is now engaged in theoretical and empirical studies of political hierarchy and wealth inequality and their evolution over the very long run.

His  scholarly papers  have appeared in Science,  Nature, New Scientist, American Economic Review, Theoretical Population Biology, Games and Economic Behavior,  Journal of Theoretical Biology, Econometrica,  Antiquity, Journal of Political Economy,  Quarterly Journal of Economics, Behavioral and Brain Science, Philosophy and Public Affairs, Journal of Public Economics, Theoretical Primatology, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA),  Harvard Business Review, Journal of Economic Literature, Journal of Economic Perspectives, Current Anthropology,  and the Economic Journal.

His recent books include The Moral Economy:  Why good laws are no substitute for good citizens (Yale University Press, 2016), A Cooperative Species: Human reciprocity and its evolution (with Herbert Gintis, Princeton University Press, 2011), The new economics of inequality and redistribution, (Cambridge University Press, 2012), and Microeconomics: Behavior, Institutions and Evolution (Princeton University Press, 2004).

He has also served as an economic advisor to the governments of Cuba, South Africa and Greece, U.S presidential candidates Robert F. Kennedy and Jesse Jackson, the Legislature of the State of New Mexico, the Congress of South African Trade Unions, the Pontifical Academy of Science (Rome), and South African President Nelson Mandela.

With CORE (Curriculum Open-access Resources for Economics) he has developed two new free online  introductory e-textbooks, The Economy, and Economy, Society, and Public Policy, for majors and non majors, respectively (www.core-econ.org) and is completing (with Simon Halliday) a new intermediate level undergraduate textbook, Microeconomics: Competition, Conflict, and Coordination (OUP forthcoming).



Wendy Carlin is Professor of Economics in the Economics Department at University College London (UCL), Research Fellow of the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR), London and external faculty at the Santa Fe Institute. Her research is on macroeconomics, institutions and economic performance, the economics of transition, and evolution of economic research and education using machine learning. She is a member of the Expert Advisory Panel of the UK’s Office for Budget Responsibility. She leads an international collaboration of researchers, the CORE project, which is changing the way economics is taught around the world www.core-econ.org. In 2015, she was awarded the CBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list for services to economics and public finance.

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