Friday, January 1, 2010

It turns out I'm a Business professor

The same lecture can be described in subtly different ways to different audiences. I see this a lot, because I have a joint appointment between Harvard's Economics Department and the Harvard Business School.

I've been asked to speak at an HBS program for alumni, and I agreed to give a talk that I called Computer-Assisted Markets.

Here's the abstract that came back after I sent in a draft of my slides. It's accurate, and I like it, but I couldn't help noticing that it has a different feel than the abstracts I write myself for economics audiences.

"Designing 21st Century Markets
While efforts to control market behavior are centuries old, computers are enabling new mechanisms of exchange. Drawing on his deep research and expertise in game theory, market design, and computationally assisted markets, HBS Professor Alvin E. Roth will share lessons learned and the implications for markets today and tomorrow. Topics include:
· Exploring the many ways that computers can assist in market exchange—from simple transaction execution to complex algorithms
· Examining the three characteristics of successful markets—ensuring thickness, avoiding congestion, and creating a safe marketplace
· Reviewing successful and not-so-successful examples of market design—from labor market clearinghouses to kidney exchange to school choice mechanisms"

Aside from the title and the description of the speaker, I think the turn of phrase that most surprised me, but that I recognize as a certain style, was the "the" as the second word of the second bulleted item...

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