Politics & Policy

We are delighted to present our first ever article exchange with another publication: Politics & Policy from Northwestern University. It was founded on August 1st 2010 by four students wanting to raise the tone of political debate on their campus, by creating a non-partisan platform where politically minded students could publish rigourous and academically informed analysis of current events. In their own words “P&P [Politics & Policy] is a community of individuals interested in why world shaping events occur and what impact these events have on our lives.”

We highly encourage you to visit their website to see more content at  http://politicsandpolicy.org/, we will be sending some issues of this magazine to their campus to be read by their students, we hope to distribute some of their issues in Toulouse soon!

Exchange

Undergraduate nudges

The TSEconomist was glad to be invited to the presentations of the new undergraduate (L2) behavioural economics class. The students were all very keen and proud of their work, one group claiming “On fait du vrai nudge” [we do proper nudges]. Each group had to present their idea for a nudge that would make the world a better place. The projects ranged from very local to global initiatives, here is a brief description of each.

Web only

The Neon Demon.

Toutes les critiques (ou presque) concernant ce film tendent vers un seul point : Le réalisateur, Nicolas Winding Refn, présente une analyse de la mode et de la société de consommation. Autant dire que la Recherche de Proust se résume à une jolie romance. Alors oui, on peut s’accorder sur le fait que Refn décortique avec un œil sévère la tyrannie et l’artificialité de la mode (« si tu n’es pas née belle, tu ne le seras jamais »), mais c’est loin d’être l’unique objet du film.

Web only

Interview with Ariel Pakes

Biography

Ariel Pakes is the Thomas Professor of Economics at Harvard, where he teaches courses in Industrial Organization and Econometrics. His research has focused on developing methods for empirically analyzing market responses to environmental and policy changes, and has done work for a number of consultancies, government agencies, and large firms. Much of his methodological work has been incorporated into the way government agencies evaluate the likely impact of policy changes. Ariel has mentored over fifty doctoral students, many of whom are now leading researchers at prestigious institutions. He received the Frisch Medal of the Econometric Society in 1986, was elected the Distinguished Fellow of the Industrial Organization in 2007 and in 2017 received the Jean-Jacques Laffont prize, after which he was kind enough to spare the time for this interview. 

Academics

Intelligent Infrastructure: The Future of AI

“It is not enough to build an AI [Artificial Intelligence] system that makes a robot work across the screen, do computer vision problem or beat someone in chess contest. We have to work on these things like good engineers do, to solve problems,”  Michael I. Jordan (Professor in Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences at University of California Berkeley) said this in a recent lecture on perspectives on AI. Building a creative problem- solving AI brain has fascinated and frightened people for several decades now. The invention of the programmable digital computer in the 1940s–a machine based on mathematical reasoning–inspired a few scientists to begin thinking of building an electronic brain. While scientists would subsequently create robots, these machines would rarely have any sort of intelligence.

Academics

From Challenges to Opportunities: Facing Climate Change in Latin America

Recent natural disasters have severely hit some Caribbean countries and some regions of the United States. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma have devastated households, cities and whole countries. Millions of citizens were forced to abandon their homes and the economic losses are estimated to be over 100 billion dollars. This situation has once again raised the question about global warming and its consequences. Scientists claimed that climate change has contributed to making these bad storms even worse.

Spotlight