The Economic Naturalist: In Search of Explanations for Everyday Enigmas

The Economic Naturalist: In Search of Explanations for Everyday Enigmas

by Robert H. Frank
4.8 4
ISBN-10:
0465003575
ISBN-13:
9780465003570
Pub. Date:
04/07/2008
Publisher:
Basic Books
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Overview

The Economic Naturalist: In Search of Explanations for Everyday Enigmas

Why do the keypads on drive-up cash machines have Braille dots? Why are round-trip fares from Orlando to Kansas City higher than those from Kansas City to Orlando? For decades, Robert Frank has been asking his economics students to pose and answer questions like these as a way of learning how economic principles operate in the real world-which they do everywhere, all the time. Once you learn to think like an economist, all kinds of puzzling observations start to make sense. Drive-up ATM keypads have Braille dots because it's cheaper to make the same machine for both drive-up and walk-up locations. Travelers from Kansas City to Orlando pay less because they are usually price-sensitive tourists with many choices of destination, whereas travelers originating from Orlando typically choose Kansas City for specific family or business reasons. The Economic Naturalist employs basic economic principles to answer scores of intriguing questions from everyday life, and, along the way, introduces key ideas such as the cost-benefit principle, the “no cash on the table” principle, and the law of one price. This is as delightful and painless a way to learn fundamental economics as there is.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780465003570
Publisher: Basic Books
Publication date: 04/07/2008
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 225,934
Product dimensions: 5.44(w) x 8.02(h) x 0.65(d)

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The Economic Naturalist: In Search of Explanations for Everyday Enigmas 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Cornellian More than 1 year ago
I picked up this book mostly because the cover art was more intriguing than the majority of economics books on the shelf, and I am glad that I did! Robert Frank breaks down many of the questions we have all asked ourselves ("Why do drive-thru ATMs have braille buttons?") and many we haven't ("Why are NYC taxis yellow, but in almost all small cities they are green or white?") and gives the answers in simple economic explanations. I was an Econ major in undergrad, but an economics background is certainly not needed to enjoy this book. I recommended the book to my fiancee (a lawyer) and my best friend (a chemist) and both loved it. The Economic Naturalist is perfect for anyone curious about how economics affects our everyday lives, and it's all accomplished without any math or equations... just common sense.