Lynne Kiesling If you have not been following the story of leaked emails and documents from the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit after their computers were hacked, Maggie Koerth-Baker’s Boing Boing post provides an overview with lots of supporting links. A couple of good overview stories are from the Economist’s most recent issue … More Those Leaked Emails, and the Politicization of Climate Science
Michael Giberson Last year thousands of Florida consumers called the state to complain about price gouging on gasoline after Hurricane Ike. This year, hoteliers, gas stations, and other business owners are saying they are being price gouged by the Florida Department of Transportation. The issue: the fee the state charges business owners who wish to … More Is Florida Agency Price Gouging or Just Charging What the Market Will Bear?
Michael Giberson In August we took note of stories indicating that appliance sales were going to get a “cash for clunkers”-like boost. James Hamilton at Econbrowser offers updated discussion, links, and commentary: Here is the description of the program from the Energy Department (hat tip: King Banaian): In late 2009 or early 2010, you may … More Appliance Sales to Get ‘cash for Clunkers’ Boost? (2)
Michael Giberson From the Central Penn Business Journal, two views on electric utility industry restructuring in Pennsylvania: First from Matt Brouillette: Pennsylvania’s electricity rate caps have kept prices artificially low, preventing competitors from entering the marketplace and consumers from having choices. Now, when rate caps expire in 2010 in PPL territory, most of central Pennsylvania … More Two Views on Electric Utility Restructuring in Pennsylvania
Lynne Kiesling Ed Glaeser has a very interesting post and an accompanying working paper on differences in entrepreneurship across cities. His post covers some history of entrepreneurship in economics (he mentions Smith, Marshall, Schumpeter, Knight, and Chinitz, but not Cantillon), how to measure entrepreneurship, and some preliminary results from their working paper: The big fact … More Ed Glaeser on Why Some Cities Are More Entrepreneurial
Michael Giberson One paper presented at the recent Second Annual Conference on Competition and Regulation in Network Industries in Brussels addressed the topic of regulation as an imperfect institution. The abstract seemed a bit of a mess, but I’m interested in views of utility regulation as an economic institution (particularly from a new institutional economics … More Have We Failed Regulation?
Lynne Kiesling Tim Haab helpfully points out an article from Time about EnergyHub, a device for consumers to see more, and more timely, information about their energy consumption. I’ve written about EnergyHub here before, and honestly, they have not been among the most forward-looking or impressive of the products I’ve seen for providing consumers with … More Energy Information Devices Start to Go Mass Market
Michael Giberson I am mildly amazed that it is possible to take something as simple as, say, palm oil or soybean oil, and – with a few relatively simple chemical tricks – turn it into motor vehicle fuel. [See it on YouTube.] However, I’m not so amazed that I’m willing to pay you or anyone … More U.S. Biodiesel Continues to Need Taxpayer Support, or Else…
Michael Giberson Al Roth surveys development of the market design course and field of study in economics at Harvard: [M]arket design is an eclectic field, drawing on game theory, experiments, computation, and field observation of all sorts (rules are data!).” … When Paul Milgrom and I began the class (when he spent a year at … More Market Design at Harvard
Lynne Kiesling Britain’s legal institutions may be about to get even more Orwellian than they already are (which is pretty Orwellian, given their widespread use of government CCTV surveillance cameras and their penchant for euphemism). The Digital Economy Bill, introduced in the Queen’s speech to Parliament earlier this week, is downright craven and very likely … More Britain’s Digital Economy Bill is a Dud