A student's guide to understanding tech policy

I work with a group of 9 students, all very talented, learning economics or finance. I have been thinking about what to teach them and what they need to know about public policy. Here is a syllabus of sorts that I have put together to get everyone up to speed on the topics they are currently researching. It is still a draft but I thought everyone could use it.


Knowledge and its limits.

The seen and the unseen

  • Dissoi Logoi is a rhetorical exercise of unknown authorship, most likely dating to just after the Peloponnesian War (431–404 BC) based on comments within the exercise’s text. It starts on page 2 in the attached PDF.

The market is a process not a product

The limits of knowledge in machine learning

Discounting and time

Information and firms


Some basics of tech

Economics of AI

Robots and workers

Zero priced goods

Platform economics


Public policy is about making fewer bad choices

Public policy and wicked problems

The public policy process demystified


Selected tech policy topics

DARPA

NASA and space

The economics of privacy

Freedom of speech


First published Jan 5, 2022