Monday Miscellany

Read Harold Pollack on the National Longitudinal Surveys and why they're at risk. In short, these surveys are the sort of public good information function that are extremely valuable but require consistent investments over many years for maximum benefit:

These surveys aren’t cheap. They cost several million dollars every year to do right. They are also a bargain. By spending $6 million per year for high-quality national surveys, we increase the chances that we will do a better job as we spend maybe 2,000 times that figure for preschool services to low-income children, not to mention even greater amounts for public assistance benefits, community colleges, and more.

Christina Paxson, our Dean at the Woodrow Wilson School, will be the next president of Brown University. Paxson is an economist whose research focuses on poverty and health over the lifespan, has really built up the health offerings at the Woo -- she started the Center for Health and Wellbeing, for one. A sampling of her research:

  • "Economic Status and Health in Childhood: The Origins of the Gradient" (link)
  • "The lasting impact of childhood health and circumstance" (link)
  • "Stature and Status: Height, Ability, and Labor Market Outcomes" (link)

Based on a great review by Daniel Altman (see ET's Guide to the Global Economy) I bought -- for just $3 -- a new ebook by Alan Beattie: Who's in Charge Here? How Governments Are Failing the World Economy? It's a quick read and is a great little political economy narrative of what's been going on for the last few years.

This great headline comes from my classmate Jesse Singal: "Drug-Testing Welfare Recipients: Expensive and Pointless, But Otherwise A Great Idea"

Finally, Alan Jacobs describes how academic search user interfaces clash with Google-trained minds.