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Grassroots Innovation and the Spread of Flourishing


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Speaker(s): Professor Edmund Phelps
Chair: Professor Craig Calhoun

Recorded on 16 October 2013 in Old Theatre, Old Building.

A handful of nations saw exploding wages, teeming employment and an engaged populace from 1820 to 1940, racing ahead of the others until something put a damper on their dynamism. What was that something? And how can these nations get back their mass flourishing?

Edmund Phelps is the 2006 Nobel Laureate in Economics and the Director of the Center on Capitalism and Society at Columbia University. His career has been devoted to two intertwined aims: to call into question the preconceptions about education, information and knowledge to which mainstream economics has clung, replacing them with the modern notions necessary to describe the successful operations of a modern economy; and to put "people as we know them", with their imperfect knowledge, understanding and expectations, back into economic models. He is the author of several books the most recent of which is Mass Flourishing: how grassroots innovation created jobs, challenge, and change.

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