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Think Like a Freak : How to Think Smarter About Almost Everything! - Steven D. Levitt

Think Like a Freak

How to Think Smarter About Almost Everything!

Paperback

Published: 13th May 2014
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The Freakonomics books have come to stand for challenging conventional wisdom; using data rather than emotion to answer questions. Now Levitt and Dubner have turned what they've learned into a readable and practical toolkit for thinking smarter, harder, and different - thinking, that is, like a Freak.

Think Like a Freak offers rules like 'Put Your Moral Compass in Your Pocket,' 'The Upside of Quitting,' 'Just Because You're Great at Something Doesn't Mean You're Good at Everything,' and 'If You Have No Talent, Follow Levitt's Path to Success.'

About the Authors

Steven D. Levitt teaches economics at the University of Chicago. His idiosyncratic economic research into areas as varied as guns and game shows has triggered debate in the media and academic circles. He recently received the American Economic Association's John Bates Clark Medal, awarded every two years to the best American economist under forty.

Stephen J. Dubner lives in New York City. He writes for The New York Times and the New Yorker, and is the bestselling author of Turbulent Souls and Confessions of a Hero-Worshipper. In August 2003 Dubner wrote a profile of Levitt in The New York Times magazine. The extraodinary response that article received led to a remarkable collaboration.

'A phenomenon.' Observer

'Non-stop fun.' Evening Standard

'Brilliant . . . you'll be stimulated, provoked and entertained. Of how many books can that be said?' Sunday Telegraph

'Dazzling . . . a delight.' The Economist

Praise for Superfreakonomics

'Page-turning, politically incorrect and ever-so-slightly intoxicating, like a large swig of tequila.' The Times

'You are guaranteed a good time.' Financial Times

'Mind-blowing.' Wall Street Journal

'Travels further than its predecessor . . . Levitt is a master at drawing counter-intuitive conclusions.' Sunday Times

CHAPTER 1

What Does It Mean to Think Like a Freak?

After writing Freakonomics and SuperFreakonomics, we started to hear from readers with all sorts of questions. Is a college degree still 'worth it'? (Short answer: yes; long answer: also yes.) Is it a good idea to pass along a family business to the next generation? (Sure, if your goal is to kill off the business— for the data show it's generally better to bring in an outside manager.*) Whatever happened to the carpal tunnel syndrome epidemic? (Once journalists stopped getting it, they stopped writing about it— but the problem persists, especially among blue- collar workers.) Some questions were existential: What makes people truly happy? Is income inequality as dangerous as it seems? Would a diet high in omega- 3 lead to world peace?

People wanted to know the pros and cons of: autonomous vehicles, breast- feeding, chemotherapy, estate taxes, fracking, lotteries, 'medicinal prayer,' online dating, patent reform, rhino poaching, using an iron off the tee, and virtual currencies. One minute we'd get an e- mail asking us to 'solve the obesity epidemic' and then, five minutes later, one urging us to 'wipe out famine, right now!' Readers seemed to think no riddle was too tricky, no problem too hard, that it couldn't be sorted out. It was as if we owned some proprietary tool— a Freakonomics forceps, one might imagine— that could be plunged into the body politic to extract some buried wisdom. If only that were true! The fact is that solving problems is hard. If a given problem still exists, you can bet that a lot of people have already come along and failed to solve it. Easy problems evaporate; it is the hard ones that linger. Furthermore, it takes a lot of time to track down, organize, and analyze the data to answer even one small question well. So rather than trying and probably failing to answer most of the questions sent our way, we wondered if it might be better to write a book that can teach anyone to think like a Freak.*

What might that look like?
 Steven D. Levitt

Steven D. Levitt teaches economics at the University of Chicago and is editor of the Journal of Political Economy. His idiosyncratic economic research into areas as varied as guns and game shows has made headlines and triggered debate in the media and academic circles. He recently received the American Economic Association's John Bates Clark Medal, which is awarded every two years to the best American economist under forty. Stephen J. Dubner lives in New York City. He writes for the New York Times and the New Yorker, and is the bestselling author of Turbulent Souls and Confessions of a Hero-Worshipper. In August 2003 Dubner wrote a profile in New York Times magazine. The extraordinary response that article received - from readers, the rest of the media and organizations including even the CIA and the Pentagon - led to a remarkable collaboration between journalist and rogue economist. Freakonomics is the eagerly anticipated result.

Visit Steven D. Levitt's Booktopia Author Page


ISBN: 9781846147890
ISBN-10: 1846147891
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 288
Published: 13th May 2014
Dimensions (cm): 23.0 x 15.6
Weight (kg): 23.1
Edition Number: 1