Discover Your Inner Economist: Use Incentives to Fall in Love, Survive Your Next Meeting, and Motivate Your Dentist – is the splendid title of a new book due to be out in the UK in August. The author of Freakonomics has read an advance copy and pulls out an interesting paragraph:
A good intuitive economist approaches a practical problem by asking "What is the relevant scarcity hindering a better outcome?" If we
haven’t posed this query, and assembled at least the beginnings of an
answer, we may founder. For instance, we might make the mistake of
throwing more money at a problem, when money is not what is needed. By
identifying the relevant scarcity, we learn where to direct the
Pretty clearly, that doesn’t just apply to financial decision making. What are we short of that is stopping us doing better?