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We ask MIT economist Josh Angrist: Isn’t econometrics boring? After a bit of a scary confrontation, we get down to the answer.He thinks this common...

We ask MIT economist Josh Angrist: Isn’t econometrics boring? After a bit of a scary confrontation, we get down to the answer.

He thinks this common misconception is a failure of teachers. Econometrics is often taught as a kind of applied mathematics with a lot of abstract theory.

In fact, the subject deals intimately with many of the questions that are of greatest importance to our personal lives and to matters of public policy. Does health insurance lead to greater health? Do private universities result in better wages? How should the Federal Reserve respond in a recession or depression?

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