Saturday, December 24, 2005

How do you distinguish a true economist from a wannabe economist?

Two interpretations.

One, does he know a formal result of economics that is not known by the wannabe economist. The welfare theorems, for example. This implies a true learned economist with a knowledge of the theory in the field.

The second, has he internalised the principles of economics in understanding the behaviour of people and institutions. For example, the intuition of incentives and, can he perceive the "unseen" behind what he sees? This implies to a good economist.

Both are not mutually exclusive!

Perhaps, the question is not too important. What is more important is that which are the good ideas that have developed from the social sciences that one should be aware of? Read here a few of these. For economics, read here.

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