Choice Magazine Review
Social & Behavioral Sciences \ Economics
Inside the economist's mind: conversations with eminent economists, ed. by Paul A. Samuelson and William A. Barnett. Blackwell Publishing, 2007. 419p afp ISBN 1405159170 pbk, $29.95; ISBN 9781405159173 pbk, $29.95. Reviewed in 2007jun CHOICE.
Inside the Economist's Mind offers 16 stand-alone, candid personal interviews with some of the world's best economists, conducted by other leading economists. A far cry from Matt Lauer talking with Tom Cruise on The Today Show, these 25-page conversations quickly hone in on what makes these leading economists from the academic world and public policy corridors tick, and how they--and the profession itself--evolved in research and thinking. These chapters originally appeared in an academic journal (Macroeconomic Dynamics, various issues, 1998-2005), and the exchanges are pitched at a fairly sophisticated level and tilt toward macroeconomic theory and policy matters. Some knowledge about and appreciation for higher economic analysis should be expected from readers; such readers have the most to gain from the book. But the people and the personalities show through in this superb collection of "economists' economists," or more specifically, the "old guard"--all are over 60; a companion volume on the "young and the restless" would make a nice complement. Bibliographic materials--references, appendixes, index--are not necessary or included in the volume. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Informed general readers; students, lower-division undergraduate and up; researchers and practitioners. -- A. R. Sanderson,