Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Kudos to Bob Hall

By way of Greg Mankiw and Tyler Cowen, I was referred to a wonderful 2009 essay by my colleague and flat tax collaborator Bob Hall, “Managing Your Career as an Economist After Tenure.”

Bob warns against alluring diversions from important work as an economist once tenure is attained.  These include writing textbooks, derivative articles of a seminal piece, writing too much of inferior quality, consulting, and government service.  “...you stand a good chance of permanent alteration from even a year or two in Washington.  Potomac fever is contagious and incurable.”

This advice is brave, courageous, and bold.  At Hoover and Stanford, Bob has no less than 10 economist colleagues who have spent considerable time in the federal government in Washington.

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