Economics for Uncertain Times
RSA Events, 2018
Photo by Santiago Lacarta on Unsplash
Jens Beckert and Richard Bronk, authors of "Uncertain Times", explore the extent to which flaws, blind spots and more importantly bias created by macroeconomics models, based on forecasts and statistical devices, shape crisis and the market economy in which we live. They remind the audience to keep in mind that the whole is kept standing by powerful narratives and stories that we tell ourselves and how those are the real modellers of the unfolding future, despite it being constantly changed and redirected by a fundamental tool of the economic and financial world: innovation which outpaces its own predictability and throws the market into instability.
Comment from our editors:
A very interesting reflection on the topic of the real usefulness of mathematical and statistical tools in Macroeconomics without disregarding their importance for coordination purposes. Alongside economic narratives and underlying the importance of innovation as cause of economic instability, Beckert and Bronk attempt to raise many important critical points: fictional side of forecasting, rhetoric of power in decision making and the paradox and trade off between cognitive dissonance and that same need for predicting changing trends, giving up the advantages of shared expectations and an analytical mono-culture creating blind spots to be more flexible and embrace uncertainty.