Tag Archives: technology

Is the American Dream Really Dead?


If the new generation can’t do better than their parents, is the American Dream dead? (Photo: Beth Rankin )

Our latest Freakonomics Radio episode is called “Is the American Dream Really Dead?” (You can subscribe to the podcast at iTunes or elsewhere , get the RSS feed , or listen via the media player above.)

Just a few decades ago, more than 90 percent of 30-year-olds earned more than their parents had earned at the same age. Now it’s only about 50 percent. What happened — and what can be done about it? Below is a transcript […]

Opinions on Inside Higher Ed


iStock/DrAfter123

As I begin my first full semester as president of Pace University after serving for 10 years as president of Oberlin College, I find myself looking to the past and the things I’ve learned. I can’t help but reflect on the extraordinary changes I’ve witnessed in American higher education along the way.

This past decade has been one of transformation for our nation and our colleges and universities. Barack Obama was twice elected president of the United States. We experienced the Great Recession — the worst economic downturn since the Depression. Income inequality has grown from a significant problem to […]

Growth that reaches everyone: facts, factors, tools

Growth that reaches everyone: facts, factors, tools

Economic growth provides the basis for overcoming poverty and lifting living standards. But for growth to be sustained and inclusive, its benefits must reach all people.

While strong economic growth is necessary for economic development, it is not always sufficient.

Over the past few decades, growth has raised living standards and provided job opportunities, lifting millions out of extreme poverty. But, we have also seen a flip side. Inequality has risen in several advanced economies and remains stubbornly high in many that are still developing. This worries policymakers everywhere for good reason. Research at the IMF and elsewhere makes it clear […]

How She Lost


Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign
Amie Parnes and Jonathan Allen
Penguin

This article appears in the Fall 2017 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here . Hillary Clinton’s tragic 2016 campaign faced withering criticism in the press, social media, and now, in Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes’s inside account, Shattered . From my vantage point as lead pollster for the Democratic nominees in 1992 and 2000, part of the closing clutch of pollsters in 2004, and invited noodge in 2016, I have little quarrel with the harshest of these criticisms. Malpractice and arrogance contributed mightily […]

Rural dreams: Upward mobility in America’s countryside

ES_20170831_Rural_out_migration

One of the defining features of the “American Dream” is the ability to succeed despite being born to disadvantaged circumstances. However, growing up to be better off than one’s parents – upward absolute intergenerational mobility – appears to be a fading experience for many Americans in recent decades and one that varies widely across the country.

In “ Rural dreams: Upward mobility in America’s countryside ,” (PDF) Eleanor Krause and Richard Reeves build off an earlier examination of the rates of social mobility across the country by Raj Chetty and his colleagues.

While most of the research on geographical variations in […]

Transurban’s Scott Charlton on the future of transport

 Uber is having a negative impact on public transport in the US, according to Transurban chief executive Scott Charlton.

Uber is having a negative impact on public transport in the US, according to Transurban chief executive Scott Charlton. David Rowe Tony Boyd When Transurban chief executive Scott Charlton released full-year profit results on Tuesday he pulled out his crystal ball and talked about the future of transport.

In an interview with Chanticleer he covered a range of topics including Uber’s impact on public transport, the shift to self-driving cars, dynamic pricing on toll roads, the imminent arrival of mobile GPS tolling and the favourable environment for infrastructure investment in Australia.

Transurban released full-year results largely in line with expectations. […]

Escaping Poverty Requires Almost 20 Years With Nearly Nothing Going Wrong

A man cleans up confetti while surrounded by tourists in Times Square in New York.

A lot of factors have contributed to American inequality: slavery, economic policy, technological change, the power of lobbying, globalization, and so on. In their wake, what’s left?

That’s the question at the heart of a new book, The Vanishing Middle Class: Prejudice and Power in a Dual Economy , by Peter Temin, an economist from MIT. Temin argues that, following decades of growing inequality, America is now left with what is more or less a two-class system: One small, predominantly white upper class that wields a disproportionate share of money, power, and political influence and a much larger, minority-heavy (but […]

Escaping Poverty Requires Almost 20 Years With Nearly Nothing Going Wrong

A man cleans up confetti while surrounded by tourists in Times Square in New York.

A lot of factors have contributed to American inequality: slavery, economic policy, technological change, the power of lobbying, globalization, and so on. In their wake, what’s left?

That’s the question at the heart of a new book, The Vanishing Middle Class: Prejudice and Power in a Dual Economy , by Peter Temin, an economist from MIT. Temin argues that, following decades of growing inequality, America is now left with what is more or less a two-class system: One small, predominantly white upper class that wields a disproportionate share of money, power, and political influence and a much larger, minority-heavy (but […]

The Barriers To Success And Upward Mobility For First Generation Students And How To Fix The Problem


On March 6, 1860, Abraham Lincoln remarked , "When one starts poor, as most do in the race of life, free society is such that he knows he can better his condition; he knows that there is no fixed condition of labor, for his whole life." Later that year, he was elected to the presidency.

President Lincoln’s words in that speech showcased the American value of upward mobility. In sharp contrast to other western nations of the time, the United States was not married to a traditional caste system. Because of this shared ethos, the United States was — and […]

No, iPhones Aren’t Luxury Items. They’re Economic Necessities


Apple To make it in America, you have to hustle. Fast-food worker or CEO, Uber driver or student, you have to stay connected in an economy built on the assumption that anyone is always reachable anywhere. In 2017, that means you need a smartphone.

When Apple released the iPhone in 2007, the world understood it as a gadget, a novelty, a cool thing you plunked down a handful of cash for if you were lucky enough to have the money. Then you just needed to figure out what to do with it. At first the answer was: play games and […]