“It is hard to imagine any story of innovation in our thinking about economics that does not involve Uri and John. Both in their independent work and in their joint projects, they have expanded and looked at the sensitive underbelly of economics. I can't think of a book that I'm looking forward to more than this one.”Prof. Dan Ariely, Professor of Behavioral Economics, Duke University; author, Predictably Irrational and The Upside of Irrationality
“John List and Uri Gneezy are among the foremost behavioral economists in the world. Their ideas have been groundbreaking, and their research has been widely read and hugely influential. I'll be eager to read any book they produce.” Prof. Daniel Gilbert, Professor of Psychology, Harvard University and Author of Stumbling on Happiness
“John List's work in field experiments is revolutionary.”Prof. Gary Becker, University of Chicago, Nobel Laureate in Economics
“John List and Uri Gneezy have done the pioneering economic work on whether gender differences are innate or the result of social pressures. They are two of America's leading young economists and their work is followed with great interest.”Prof. Tyler Cowen, George Mason University; author, The Economic Scene and blogger, Marginal Revolution.com
“Gneezy and List... specialize in ingenious 'field experiments' that elucidate the workings of social psychology and decision making...Writing in the Freakonomics vein of breezy pop-econ... The authors' lucid, engaging exposition of thought-provoking research spotlights some of our more perverse promptingsand their underlying logic."
Publishers Weekly, STARRED Review
“Fun, Freakonomics-style stories about why people do the things they do
.Gneezy and List offer illuminating discussions on many topics, from the differences between animus-based and economic discrimination to how women can grow up to be more competitive and close the gender gap in the labor market.”
“[T]rue trailblazers in one of the greatest innovations in economics of the last fifty years.”
Steven D. Levitt, coauthor of Freakonomics
“Uri Gneezy is a pioneer whose work tears down the wall between the lab and the field.”
Alvin E. Roth, winner of the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences
“John List and Uri Gneezy are leaders in the area of experimental and behavioral economics and rising stars of the profession. Their work bridges the gap between the lab and the field and enables us to learn how economic agents make real decisions in controlled environments and as the economic stakes change. A book bringing their distinctive perspectives and styles has the potential of being a real home run.”Prof. Daron Acemoglu, Professor of Economics, M.I.T, coauthor of Why Nations Fail
“Gneezy and List are two of the most brilliant and interesting economists in the world. Their work is simultaneously scientifically path breaking and accessible to the general public. They've studied prosaic markets like baseball card conventions, daycare centers, and auto-repair shops, but their ideas are so deep that Gneezy and List reveal that these mundane markets turn out to hold the secrets of human motivation and human behavior. Their work has revolutionized all of social science. I can't wait to read a book that they write.”Prof. David Laibson, Professor of Economics, Harvard University
More fun, Freakonomics-style stories about why people do the things they do. In this debut, Gneezy (Behavioral Economics/Univ. of California, San Diego) and List (Economics/Univ. of Chicago) draw on 20 years of pioneering field research to explain human motivations. Conducting randomized experiments that examine people's behavior in the real world, they have explored "the real underbelly of human motivation" behind problems in such areas as education, discrimination and gender equity. Their informative stories about the behavior of people in real-life situations discuss their fascinating discoveries: Most modern-day discrimination stems from people or companies trying to increase their profits. Women earn less because of deeply held cultural worldviews. Financial incentives help underachieving school kids get higher grades. Donors give money mainly to feel good about themselves. In sum, write the authors, "self-interest lies at the root of human motivation--not necessarily selfishness, but self-interest." Once one understands what people value (money, relationships, praise, etc.), it should be possible to help close the achievement gap in schools, get donors to give more money, and so on, by designing incentives that work to change behavior. Gneezy and List offer illuminating discussions on many topics, from the differences between animus-based and economic discrimination to how women can grow up to be more competitive and close the gender gap in the labor market. Their book brims with stories of the Chicago public schools, the matrilineal society of the Khasi tribal people, and the thinking behind charitable appeals to help children with cleft palates, among others. Weak title aside, this book will interest general readers as well as individuals and companies seeking to influence behaviors.