Frank Dikötter on Mao’s Great Famine

EconTalk | 6 August 2018 | 1h 12m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Frank Dikötter about his book Mao’s Great Famine: The History of China’s Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958–1962. Chronicles the strategies Mao and the Chinese leadership implemented to increase grain and steel production in the late 1950s leading to a collapse in agricultural output and the deaths of millions by starvation.

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Annie Duke on the Power of Quitting

EconTalk | 28 November 2022 | 1h 22m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Annie Duke about her book Quit: The Power of Knowing When to Walk Away. Backgrounds how society’s conflation of grit with character has made quitting unnecessarily hard, and explains why our desire for certainty harms our decision-making ability. Argues for recognising the expected cost of sticking with a bad proposition.

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Devon Zuegel on Inflation, Argentina, and Crypto

EconTalk | 17 October 2022 | 1h 03m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Devon Zuegel about her article Inside the crypto black markets of Argentina. Discusses the context and application of cryptocurrency to solving Argentina’s problems of unreliable banks and high and unpredictable inflation.

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Roland Fryer on Educational Reform

EconTalk | 10 October 2022 | 1h 13m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Roland Fryer about his research revealing the potential of incentives to improve students’ test scores; why he’s far more concerned about closing the racial achievement gap than keeping the love of learning pure; the five best practices of successful schools; and why it’s his failures far more than his successes that keep him in this fight.

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Raj Chetty on Economic Mobility

EconTalk | 22 August 2022 | 1h 19m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Raj Chetty about his work on economic mobility. Focuses on Social Capital I and II, his co-authored studies in Nature, which find that poor people in America who are only connected to other poor people do dramatically worse financially than poor people who are connected to a wider array of economic classes. Discusses the policy implications and his earlier work on the American Dream and the challenge of Americans born in recent decades to do better financially than their parents.

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Tyler Cowen on Talent

EconTalk | 15 August 2022 | 1h 01m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Tyler Cowen about his book Talent, co-authored with Daniel Gross. Discusses how (and how not) to identify the talented. Explains why, for high-level positions, unstructured interviews are important, why stamina is usually preferable to grit, and why credentials are largely a relic of the past.

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Gerd Gigerenzer on How to Stay Smart in a Smart World

EconTalk | 1 August 2022 | 1h 08m | Listen Later | Podcasts | Spotify
Interview with Gerd Gigerenzer about his book How to Stay Smart in a Smart World: Why Human Intelligence Still Beats Algorithms. Explains why computers aren’t nearly as smart as we think; argues that when it comes to life-and-death decisions, we’ll always need real, not artificial, brains; and suggests that human beings need to get smarter in order to avoid being manipulated by people who use AI for their own ends.

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