Economics the optimistic science

I’m currently reading Grand Pursuit, The Story Of Economic Genius by Sylvia Nasar author of A Beautiful Mind.

An excellent book, partly about the development of economic thought but also about the lives of Marshall, Keynes, Hayek, Schumpeter, Fisher, Friedman and the others giants who created modern economics. Highly recommended. 

While they don’t feature in the book, one shouldn’t forget Australian economists who have made seminal contributions, like Trevor Swan, Max Corden and Colin Clark.

One odd thing about Australian academic economics however is the lack of interest in the resources sector. Australia has a long and noble tradition in agricultural economics but it’s hard to think of academic economists with significant reputations in mining or in oil and gas. It’s good to see that Peter Hartley from Rice (an ANU alumnus) has recently been appointed to a new BHP Billiton chair at UWA.