Category Archives: Humanities & Social Sciences

This article summarizes the Babcock et al. (2017) , recently published in the American Economic Review. . Among the different reasons to explain the gender gap in the labor market one is the process by which men and women advance in […]

In the previous entry, I described Nick Bostrom’s argument for the ‘simulation hypothesis’, i.e., the conjecture that we are very, very likely living not in a ‘real’ world, but within some kind of computer simulation, and ended offering some skeptical […]

One important principle of any sensible social epistemology is that the fraction of crazy-sounding ideas that are really crazy is extremely high. Of course, a lot of crazy-sounding ideas have turned out being right (e.g., the evolution of different species […]

The last issue of the Journal of Economic Perspectives published the article Is China Socialist? by Barry Naughton , which I summarize here. . In order to address the question, the first thing Naughton does is to provide a working definition […]

Theory of mind is the ability to attribute mental states—beliefs, intents, desires, knowledge, etc.— to oneself and others and to understand that others have beliefs, desires, intentions, and perspectives that may be different to ourselves. Attributing thoughts to others […]

This article summarizes the work by Baker, Bloom and Davis (2016) published in the last issue of the Quarterly Journal of Economics. . The economy does not like uncertainty. Or so goes a common saying among economic agents. In fact, economic […]

It is said that Washington Irving’s biography of Christopher Columbus, published in 1828, was the work that started the legend that the discoverer of America was the person that convinced the ‘nearly medieval’ Europeans of his time of the sphericity […]

Pigmentations are among the clearest examples of phenotypic variation in many species. Hair, skin and eye colors are highly heritable and visible traits in humans. Blond hair is most commonly found in Northern and Central Europeans and their descendants. Nowadays […]

An innovative group of 30 international education professionals taught the first online microbiology course using Twitter, #microMOOCSEM, complete with lectures, videos, news, and more, with some classes reaching over 260,000 impressions and 3,700 retweets. Currently, most students are users of […]

Archaeologists work by destroying their object of study. An archaeological excavation is a process of deliberate destruction of the site being dug, during which relevant information is recorded. Since the original site is destroyed in the process, information must be […]