Big Ideas in Macroeconomics ePUB Ì Big Ideas PDF \

Big Ideas in Macroeconomics An accessible description of modern macroeconomics and a defense of its policy relevanceMacroeconomists have been caricatured either as credulous savants in love with the beauty of their mathematical models or as free market fundamentalists who admit no doubt as to the market's wisdom In this book Kartik Athreya draws a truer picture offering a nontechnical description of prominent ideas and models in macroeconomics and arguing for their value as interpretive tools as well as their policy relevance Athreya deliberately leaves out the technical machinery providing an essential guide to the sometimes abstract ideas that drive macroeconomists' research and practical policy adviceAthreya describes the main approach to macroeconomic model construction the foundational Walrasian general euilibrium framework and its modern version the Arrow Debreu McKenzie ADM model In the heart of the book Athreya shows how the Walrasian approach shapes and unifies much of modern macroeconomics He details models central to ongoing macroeconomic analyses the neoclassical and stochastic growth models the standard incomplete markets model the overlapping generations model and the standard search model Athreya's accessible primer traces the links between the views and policy advice of modern macroeconomists and their shared theoretical approach Excellent I wish I had read this during my second year in graduate school after taking the core PhD curriculum Kartik Athreya ties the important results in microeconomic theory particularly regarding Walrasian euilibrium to the setups of workhorse macroeconomic models Both the book's title and subtitle might mislead you First big ideas doesn't mean important contributions of macroeconomics This book is not about the sausage but about how the sausage is made Second the nature of the subject is incompatible with the book's subtitle With nontechnical what the author means is there's no math But the subject is deeply technical It couldn't be any other way as he writes about macroeconomic modelling which is always done with math I do admire however the author's great skill in walking the reader through all the important theorems of the macroeconomic plumbing without a single euation With Athreya you're in the hands of an orthodox economist one who defends vigorously the role of math in economic research and the standard simplifications and assumptions of workhorse macro models But he's also aware of even sympathetic toward the limitations of our stylized models This is something I didn't see often enough in the classroomIn this book however every debate about standard macro practice is won by the neoclassical orthodoxy Standard methodology either makes sense or it's the least bad alternative or it's the only way we can make progress The simplifications of economic models achieve two goals 1 they save the public from economists who otherwise would be able to explain anything or prescribe any policy they chose; 2 allow economists to achieve greater relevance in other parts of the model models can't be rich and complex everywhere as they would become impossible to analyze Although I'm in Athreya's camp I wish he had made a stronger case for non neoclassical approaches limited rationality non rational expectations Keynesian economics etcWho is this book for Economists I think Very few people without graduate level education in economics will finish it because as I said despite the absence of math it is a technical book Athreya seems to think otherwise Towards the end of chapter 5 after 300 pages of demanding discussions on material that only economists would find of interest the author explains in plain English what the prisoner's dilemma is I doubt anybody in the remaining audience needed to be toldI will keep a copy of this book at hand for two reasons First because I want to savor and ponder again many of Athreya's discussions His points can be really deep although only of interest to an economist Second because the list of references is impressive Athreya is a well read economist Time and again I felt compelled to read the numerous books and articles he referencesFor a thoughtful review read Noah Smith's blog post As the author says in the closing paragraphs this book aligns closely with the first year of graduate studies in economics It served nicely as tangential reading during my rare non busy lunches and worked well being stretched out over a year Kartik is very well read and the one thing that would really be nice is a list at the end of each chapter or at the end of the book of topics that are listed in the book and the references that supplied for each topic in the text Apparently nontechnical means without euations and graphs Unfortunately topics Athreya is writing about are very hard to express in words alone That is why book is uite boring and hard to read The book can be useful for students as a complement to technical texts but not for general public

  • Hardcover
  • 415 pages
  • Big Ideas in Macroeconomics
  • Kartik B. Athreya
  • English
  • 27 October 2015
  • 9780262019736

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