Sunday, December 11, 2005

Chronicle Column #2 and Msg from Steve Levitt

My second Chronicle of Higher Education column has been posted:
Trusting the system

Not as controversial perhaps as my first one, so not as much bruhaha (I still remember that word showing up on a 7th grade vocabulary list). I did recently get this unsolicited e-mail from Steve Levitt in regard to the first column:
Don't like the term Freakonomics, eh?

Then don't bother sending your packet to U of C.

Just kidding.

I'm not even involved with junior recruiting this year.

Steve
To which my reply was:
Yeah, actually my next column starts with an apology for the first one, analyzed using the model from my job market paper.

I have a second paper on fads and fashion that--I just recently realized--happens to explain why you used to be my (academic) hero until the Clark Medal and the book made you too well-known and popular, so that I now have to adjust my tastes to someone lesser known with more signal value.

When I submitted that column though, I never expected it to be published, or for it to be so widely read. It surprised and mortified me.

I am sorry about any offense, though I stand by my claim that the term Freakonomics is horrid. Though for a brief second, I did consider, for want of a better term, listing it on my CV as a field.

Ben
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