Crack, AIDS, and economics

Watch Freakonomics’s author Steven Levitt give a talk on Why do crack dealers still live with their moms?

About the talk:

In an eye-opening talk — presented before the publication of Freakonomics — Steven Levitt presents one of the book’s more fascinating analyses. Sifting data collected through first-person interviews with a Chicago drug gang, he shows that drug dealing is not at all a quick route to riches. And yes, a drug gang does have a org chart.

Enjoy economist Emily Oster‘s talk on What do we really know about the spread of AIDS?

About the talk:

Emily Oster, a University of Chicago economist, looks at the stats on AIDS in Africa — and comes up with a stunning conclusion: Everything we know about AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa is wrong. We look for root causes such as poverty and poor health care — but we also need to factor in, say, the price of coffee, and the routes of long-haul truckers. In short, there is a lot we don’t know; and our assumptions about what we do know may keep us from finding the best way to stop the disease.

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