Blogging the Bookshelf

Blogging my bookshelf – one book at a time

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Entries Tagged as 'policy'

The Origins of Statistical Inference – “The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns”, Sasha Issenberg

December 4th, 2012 · Comments Off on The Origins of Statistical Inference – “The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns”, Sasha Issenberg · Data, Policy, Statistical Inference, Statistics

Not far from Fisher, a young economist named Austin Bradford Hill was growing similarly impatient with the limits of statistics to account for cause and effect in health care. In 1923, for example, Hill received a grant from Britain’s Medical Research Council that sent him to the rural parts of Essex, east of London, to […]

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The Accuracy of Climate Models – “The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction” – Nate Silver

November 24th, 2012 · Comments Off on The Accuracy of Climate Models – “The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction” – Nate Silver · Environmental Policy, Policy, Politics, Prediction, Statistics

Emanuel’s concerns are actually quite common among the scientific community: climate scientists are in much broader agreement about some parts of the debate than others. A survey of climate scientists conducted in 2008 found that almost all (94 percent) were agreed that climate change is occurring now, and 84 percent were persuaded that it was […]

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Bayes’ Theorem – “The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction”, Nate Silver

November 21st, 2012 · Comments Off on Bayes’ Theorem – “The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction”, Nate Silver · Policy, Prediction, Statistics

Bayes’s theorem is concerned with conditional probability. That is, it tells us the probability that a theory or hypothesis is true if some event has happened. Suppose you are living with a partner and come home from a business trip to discover a strange pair of underwear in your dresser drawer. You will probably ask […]

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Markets for Predicting Macro-Economic Variables – “The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction”, Nate Silver

November 20th, 2012 · Comments Off on Markets for Predicting Macro-Economic Variables – “The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction”, Nate Silver · Economics, Policy, Prediction

One of the most basic applications might simply be markets for predicting macroeconomic variables like GDP and unemployment. There are already a variety of direct and indirect ways to bet on things like inflation, interest rates, and commodities prices, but no high-volume market for GDP exists. There could be a captive audience for these markets: […]

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The Limitations of Economic Forecasts – “The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction”, Nate Silver

November 19th, 2012 · Comments Off on The Limitations of Economic Forecasts – “The Signal and the Noise: The Art and Science of Prediction”, Nate Silver · Economics, Policy, quote

Instead, economic forecasts are blunt instruments at best, rarely being able to anticipate economic turning points more than a few months in advance. Fairly often, in fact, these forecasts have failed to “predict” recessions even once they were already under way: a majority of economists did not think we were in one when the three […]

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Bjelke-Petersen on Medicare – “Joh: The Life and Political Adventures of Johannes Bjelke-Petersen”, Hugh Lunn

October 11th, 2012 · Comments Off on Bjelke-Petersen on Medicare – “Joh: The Life and Political Adventures of Johannes Bjelke-Petersen”, Hugh Lunn · Health Policy, Policy, Political Communication, Politics, Queensland

Mr Speaker, Throughout history, man has had to cope with many disasters. Some of these disasters have become household names – the Biblical Flood, the eruption of Vesuvius that destroyed Pompeii, the Titanic. Well, as from Friday we can add another monumental disaster that will affect every household in Queensland and the rest of Australia […]

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Queensland Decentralisation – “Joh: The Life and Political Adventures of Johannes Bjelke-Petersen”, Hugh Lunn

October 4th, 2012 · Comments Off on Queensland Decentralisation – “Joh: The Life and Political Adventures of Johannes Bjelke-Petersen”, Hugh Lunn · Policy, Queensland

There are special needs in Queensland, and many of these arise from the problems of decentralisation. Ten of Australia’s twenty-four most populous cities are in this state, and more people live outside Brisbane in Queensland than live in the whole of South Australia or Western Australia (1,250,000 in 1977). It is true that Western Australia […]

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Folks don’t listen to you when your voice is low and patient and you stop them in the hot sun and make them do arithmetic – “All the King’s Men” – Robert Penn Warren 

June 27th, 2012 · Comments Off on Folks don’t listen to you when your voice is low and patient and you stop them in the hot sun and make them do arithmetic – “All the King’s Men” – Robert Penn Warren  · Campaigning, Policy, Political Communication, Politics, Progressive Politics

You could see Willie standing on a street corner, sweating through his seersucker suit, with his hair down in his eyes, holding an old enveloped in one hand and a pencil in the other, working out figures to explain what he was squaking about, but folks don’t listen to you when your voice is low […]

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The Bank is Something Else Than Men – “The Grapes of Wrath” – John Steinbeck 

June 14th, 2012 · Comments Off on The Bank is Something Else Than Men – “The Grapes of Wrath” – John Steinbeck  · Economics, Policy, Politics, Quotes

The bank is something else than men. It happens that every man in a bank hates what the bank does, and yet the bank does it. The bank is something more than men, I tell you. It’s the monster. Men made it, but they can’t control it.

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The ‘Abominable “No” Man’ – “Inside the Canberra Press Gallery: Life in the Wedding Cake of Old Parliament House” – Rob Chalmers

May 26th, 2012 · Comments Off on The ‘Abominable “No” Man’ – “Inside the Canberra Press Gallery: Life in the Wedding Cake of Old Parliament House” – Rob Chalmers · Economics, Policy, Politics, Quotes

The more influential businesspeople did not turn up at the front counter in William Street; they went to Canberra to see the Minister for Agriculture and Commerce, McEwen. What they did not know was that McEwen would have made up his mind in advance of seeing any delegation whether he could revise a licensing decision […]

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