Episode 91: Being a Social Science Maverick with Sendhil Mullainathan

Sendhil Mullainathan does a lot of things, and he does them well. He’s a professor of Computation and Behavioral Science at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business. I originally talked to Sendhil for our podcast series, They Thought We Were Ridiculous. He was well-positioned to give his perspective on a contentious, interdisciplinary field of social science called “behavioral economics.” But nowadays, behavioral economics is mainstream, but Sendhil has continued to study big questions that cut across the typical academic boundaries between disciplines. We talk about AI, economics, and racial bias.

You can listen to our full series on behavioral economics here (Sendhil’s voice pops up in episodes 3 and 4).

Also, the study we discuss testing racial discrimination in hiring practices was first reported in this 2003 paper in American Economic Review.


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