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GDP: A Brief Affectionate History (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 28. Januar 2014


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Produktinformation

  • Gebundene Ausgabe: 153 Seiten
  • Verlag: Princeton Univers. Press (28. Januar 2014)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0691156794
  • ISBN-13: 978-0691156798
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 1,9 x 15,2 x 22,9 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.5 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (2 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 84.129 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
  • Komplettes Inhaltsverzeichnis ansehen

Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen

Winner of the 2015 Bronze Medal in Economics, Axiom Business Book Awards One of The Wall Street Journal's Best Books of 2014 One of Choice's Outstanding Academic Titles for 2014 One of FA-mag.com's Books of the Year 2014 One of "The Books Quartz Read" in 2014 One of Minnpost.com's 'Three (plus) books for the econ buff on your list' 2014 Longlisted for the FT & McKinsey Business Book of the Year 2014 "GDP is, as Diane Coyle points out in her entertaining and informative GDP: A Brief but Affectionate History, a bodge, an ongoing argument."--John Lanchester, London Review of Books "[A] little charmer of a book ... GDP: A Brief but Affectionate History is just what the title promises... Cowperthwaite himself would nod in agreement over Ms. Coyle's informed discussion of what the GDP misses and how it misfires... Ms. Coyle--a graceful and witty writer, by the way--recounts familiar problems and adds some new ones... [E]xcellent."--James Grant, Wall Street Journal "Anyone who wants to know how GDP and the SNA have come to play such important roles in economic policy-making will gain from reading Coyle's book. As will anyone who wants to gain more understanding of the concept's strengths and weaknesses."--Nicholas Oulton, Science "Diane Coyle's new book, GDP: A Brief But Affectionate History, is a timely contribution to discussions of modern economic performance."--Arnold Kling, American "[E]xcellent."--Adam Creighton, The Australian "Diane Coyle's book is as good a simple guide as we are likely to see."--Samuel Brittan, Financial Times "Coyle does good work explicating a topic that few understand, even if it affects each of us daily. A pleasure for facts-and-numbers geeks, though accessibly written and full of meaningful real-world examples."--Kirkus Reviews "[S]mart and lucid... [S]hort but masterful."--Todd G. Buchholz, Finance & Development "[G]reat (and well-timed) new book."--Uri Friedman, The Atlantic "In a charming and accessible new book, Diane Coyle untangles the history, assumptions, challenges and shortcomings of this popular rhetorical device, which has become so central to policy debates around the world... Coyle's book is a good primer for the average citizen as well as the seasoned economist."--Adam Gurri, Umlaut "[I]t is interesting and important, particularly when it comes to the emphasis now given to GDP, and the inadequacies of this now time-honoured measurement of how our economies are doing... With clarity and precision, she explains its strengths and weaknesses."--Peter Day, BBC News Business "Diane Coyle has bravely attempted in a recent book to make the subject once more accessible, and even interesting."--John Kay, Financial Times "[T]his is as engaging a book about GDP as you could ever hope to read. It falls into that genre of books that are 'biographies of things'--be they histories of longitude, the number zero or the potato--and is both enlightening and entertaining."--Andrew Sawers, FS Focus "GDP: A Brief But Affectionate History is a fascinating 140-page book that I cannot recommend highly enough. This is simply the best book on GDP that I've ever seen."--John Mauldin "As a potted history of approaches to quantifying national output from the 18th century onward, GDP: A Brief but Affectionate History deserves high marks. It is particularly edifying to learn about the military motivation behind the initial attempts."--Martin S. Fridson, Financial Analysts Journal "The strongest part of the book charts the development of national accounting from the 17th century through to the creation of GDP itself and its literal and metaphorical rises and falls in the 20th and 21st centuries... This is lively and surprisingly readable stuff."--Eilis Lawlor, LSE Review of Books "Coyle has written an engaging, introductory to mid-level book on the GDP that makes sense of a statistic that hardly anyone actually understands... It does not require any training in economics, but it covers many topics that even professional economists would find beneficial, including an argument that GDP is an increasingly inappropriate measure for the 21st century."--Choice "[A] little charmer of a book."--Wall Street Journal (A Best Non-Fiction Book of 2014) "GDP is a thought-provoking account of how the gross domestic product statistic came to be so important... The book is a useful and timely contribution."--Louise Rawlings, Economic Record

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Diane Coyle is the author of a number of books, including The Economics of Enough and The Soulful Science: What Economists Really Do and Why It Matters (both Princeton). She holds a PhD in economics from Harvard and is a visiting research fellow at the University of Oxford's Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment.

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Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Die Autorin hat in Harvard Ökonomie studiert, sie schrieb für den Economist und Independent. Zur Zeit sitzt sie u.A. im Aufsichtsrat der BBC und berät Vodafone. Sie kann schreiben und ist tief im (ökonomischen) Establisment zu Hause. In den Glanzzeiten der New Economy schrieb sie ein Buch mit dem Titel: Paradoxes of Prosperity: Why the New Capitalism Benefits All (2001).
Wie sie in diesem Buch betont sieht sie inzwischen den schönen neuen Kapitalismus nicht mehr ganz so rosig. Von einer wirklichen Kritikerin des ökonomischen Mainstreams ist die Autorin aber auch heute meilenweit entfernt. Im Buch fallen dann auch so Sätze wie "For all our faults, economists do pay attention do evidence".
Die Theorie der rationalen Erwartungen oder der effizienten Märkte haben mit Evidenz wohl soviel zu tun wie die jungfräuliche Geburt Mariens. Es ist auch bekannt, dass der maximale Horizont von Wirtschaftsprognosen 3 Monate beträgt. Nachdem die Daten zumindest diesen lag haben geht sich bestenfalls eine "Nowcast" (es heisst wirklich so) aus. Trotzdem tretten die sogenannten Wirtschaftsweisen regelmässig vor die Kamera und verkünden der staunenden Menschheit die ökonomische Zukunft. Karl Aiginger, der Chef des Österr. WIFO, sieht seit 3 Jahren einen Silberstreif am Horizont. Der Mann braucht offensichtlich einen Doktor.
Die Ökonomen schaffen sich aber auch ihre "Evidence" selbst. Das Buch ist dafür eine sehr gute Illustration. Die Autorin betont mehrmals, dass das GDP einerseits die zentrale Zahl im politisch-ökonomischen Diskurs darstellt. Andererseits ist es eine weitgehend willkürliche Festlegung. So wurden ursprünglich die Staatsausgaben abgezogen.
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2 Kommentare War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich? Ja Nein Feedback senden...
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Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Eine kleine geschichte von GDP, aber über die Geschichte auch eine gute und leicht verständliche Introduktion. Sollte Grundwissen sein für jeder der gern über Wachstum redet oder dagegen ist, weil Wachstum durch GDP gemessen wird.

Diane Coyle erklärt wie GDP gemessen und berechnet wird (es ist ein ziemlich artifiziel Konzept), was daran nützlich ist, und auch wo es fehlt.
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Amazon.com: 36 Rezensionen
33 von 41 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A work in (need of) process 15. Februar 2014
Von David Wineberg - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Gross Domestic Product is a concept so massive, so convoluted, so compromised by rules, exceptions, patches, and qualifications, that only a handful of people in the world fully understand it, and that does not include the commentators and politicians who bandy it about, daily. "There is no such entity out there as GDP in the real world, waiting to be measured by economists. It is an abstract idea." That sets the tone of Diane Coyle's excellent and sympathetic examination of GDP. Then it's on into the impenetrable forest.

Inconsistencies abound. If you care for your child, it doesn't count in GDP. If you take in neighborhood children, it does. If you paint your bedroom, it doesn't count. If you hire the kid next door, it does. Technology and technical improvements don't count much, because we don't know how to measure and incorporate them. Even in the mid 90s, we knew that technology was actually trimming inflation by 1.3%, but that was never acknowledged. This is the black hole of GDP, as tech becomes huge.

A special conundrum comes from the soaring financial sector, which makes money without actually producing anything. Accounting for that has evolved from "Alice and Wonderland" to "statistical mirages" that warp the GDPs of many nations. Financials account for nearly 8% of US GDP, but the way we account for them overstates their heft by 20-50%. For example, both borrowing and lending are considered productive businesses, and their numbers pad GDP both ways, using the same funds.

Coyle stays focused, giving us an overview that is understandable (as well as frustrating). She does it by structuring her book as history, showing how economies and GDP have evolved over eras. There are diversions, but they are mentions of societal changes, wars and the like, which made GDP evolve the way it did.

There is so much wrong with GDP, it's hard to plough a straight row through. Coyle shows great skill in not following tangents, like how bizarre the Consumer Price Index (CPI) is or how inaccurate unemployment rates are. The unemployment rate only accounts for those receiving benefits. Once those are exhausted, you're no longer unemployed (Only 59% of working age Americans are employed vs the 7% unemployment rate). Yet major decisions are based on that index's relation to GDP. As for CPI, it excludes "volatile" energy and food, which are the most common and frequent purchases, far more important than say, personal computers. If you add in healthcare and alcohol, these factors make up 40% of consumer spending. But the CPI says there is no inflation. This same kind of inaccuracy is the standard in computing GDP.

I do get annoyed at the tiresome economists' argument (made here by Coyle) that technology has improved so much, it has massively reduced the effective costs of many things. That is only partly true. Computers do have much more memory for far less money today, but the systems and software are now so complex that the base unit cannot be compared to prior art. You could not operate a computer today equipped they way they were 25 years ago; they are essentially completely different tools. So we need to rebase the equivalence. Similarly with cable tv. Yes, we have 200 channels today, but if you don't want 200 channels, too bad. You pay for them anyway. It doesn't matter that they each cost 30 cents a month instead of 75. The monthly $60 today is not necessarily better than the old $6 for 15 channels. Rebasing is required. The same goes for GDP itself. It constantly needs rebasing as our society evolves, or it becomes a(nother) near meaningless number we rely on totally, which is the case today.

The economy is a fluid concept, and Coyle says we just need to keep refining GDP to work with it. One day, we'll figure it out - and then it will be instantly obsolete again. Lifetime employment for economists.

David Wineberg
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
My Review of GDP 13. April 2014
Von J. Livingstone - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
The complexities and the difficulties of GDP are not frequently discussed, but they are well-described here - so is the necessity for a growth measure like GDP. This well-written little book frankly discusses both the pluses of GDP as well as the minuses, warts and all. Only God knows how, but the writer explains the subject matter competently for both the layperson and the professional economist - which is extremely rare, but most welcome. This makes the book well worth reading - to both laypersons and specialists alike.
9 von 10 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Surprisingly interesting 23. März 2014
Von american bandersnatch - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
A very short book that provided an interesting overview of this much reported but little understood figure. I'm sure trained economists will find it superficial but to a layman like me it was just right.
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Very useful 17. Juni 2014
Von Andres Marroquin - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
I read GDP: A Brief but Affectionate History by Diane Coyle for three reasons: (1) to see if the book can be used as a textbook in a principles of macroeconomics class; (2) of course, to learn more about GDP and economic growth; and (3) to learn writing from an inspiring economics communicator.

Arnold Kling rightly says that economic history can be used to teach macroeconomics more effectively. GDP presents a historical narrative of the evolution of GDP, which started as a result of war, and soon became the main macroeconomic indicator. So, yes, with a few explanations to clarify concepts, one can use the book in an introductory class on macroeconomics.

The Gross Domestic Product has been criticised frequently. Critics argue, among other things, that GDP is not a good measure of social welfare, that it does not include the informal economy, and that it does not deal well with innovation. Those criticisms are justifiable and spot-on, but as Diane Coyle argues, in spite of its many handicaps the GDP is still a useful tool to measure economic performance. From the beginning GDP was not seen as a measure of social welfare, but of income and production. Of course, we need other indicators to measure welfare, but as far as income and production goes, the GDP is still useful. That does not mean that it is perfect, not at all. In fact, it needs serious modifications.

I like Diane's writing style a lot. I follow her blog closely. However, I can not tell exactly what is so attractive about her writing. She explains her ideas and arguments with an almost optimal level of complexity, no more, no less. You can look at the way she describes GNP in the book. She could have given a long explanation but instead she just tells what is sufficient for understanding the main ideas in the book. The most important characteristic, I think, is that she asks big questions. At the end of the book she argues that, under the current digital and online economy, and everything that they imply we need a new definition of "the economy." That is a metaphysical claim of a mainly "physical" social science. So she makes one think big and not many writers can do that.

Of course I am making huge simplifications of sharply elaborated arguments. .
5 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Good history, short on the justification. 22. April 2014
Von J. Edgar Mihelic - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
I read Stiglitz and Sen’s “Mismeasuring Our Lives” a while back, and I bought their arguments that GDP was itself defective and overly reductive and measured some of the wrong things. They proposed a dashboard of stats that would better measure wellbeing than GDP does.

Coyle does not think this is necessary. After going through a history of GDP, she concluded:

GDP does a good job of measuring how fast (or not) the output of “the economy” is growing. And GDP growth is closely linked to social welfare. GDP struggles with measuring innovation, quality and intangibles, but it does a better job than any currently available alternative. (136)

And then she proposes some tweaks to GDP to better work in the information economy.

Overall she does a good job outlining the history. It is accessible to everyone with some background in national accounting (even if just econ 101). My only issue is where she looks at possible alternatives to GDP. I kept waiting for her to really get into the Sen/Stiglitz study, and then she did. For one page (118). Then where she lost me, was her paragraph dismissal of the Bhutaneese metric of “Gross National Happiness” (112). I am a fan of trying to track flourishing, even if that makes me “Grotesque” by her words without much justification. These parts are all too short and come across as dismissive, even in a brief, affectionate history.
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