IEA Conversations

How ideas can change the world, with Deidre McCloskey

July 25, 2019

IEA Digital Manager Darren Grimes introduces Deidre McCloskey’s talk at the IEA’s THINK conference on how ‘How ideas can change the world’.

From 2000 to 2015, McCloskey was the Distinguished Professor of Economics, History, English, and Communication at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). McCloskey’s ‘Bourgeois Virtues’ trilogy (2006, 2010, 2016) examines factors in history that led to advancement in human achievement and prosperity. She argues that enrichment comes from “innovation” rather than capital accumulation as is frequently argued.

McCloskey is also known for her critique of the post-1940s “official modernist” methodology in economics (McCloskey Critique). In her 1985 book, The Rhetoric of Economics, she argues that economic modernism has ultimately taken equilibrium model-building and econometrics “absurdly” far.

She self describes as a "Postmodern, quantitative, literary, ex-Marxist, economist, historian, progressive Episcopalian, coastie-bred Chicagoan woman who was once not."

After her THINK talk and for this podcast, Darren managed to catch up with Deidre to ask a few more questions.

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