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  • John Murray Learning
  • John Murray Learning
  • John Murray Learning

The Inner Lives of Markets: How People Shape Them And They Shape Us

Ray Fisman, Tim Sullivan

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Prose: non-fiction, Economics, Economic theory & philosophy, Macroeconomics, Popular economics, Sales & marketing

Think FREAKONOMICS meets THE UNDERCOVER ECONOMIST. THE INNER LIVES OF MARKETS is a journey into the mysterious corners of everyday economics. Who buys, who sells, why it matters, when it works, and what to do when it breaks.


'...a quick, and exceedingly engaging, tour of economic history...' Financial Times

The past twenty-five years have witnessed a remarkable shift in how we get the stuff we want. If you've ever owned a business, rented a flat, or shopped online, you've had a front-row seat for this revolution-in-progress. Breakthrough companies like Amazon and Uber have disrupted the old ways and made the economy work better - all thanks to technology.

At least that's how the story of the modern economy is usually told. But in this lucid, wry book, Ray Fisman and Tim Sullivan show that the revolution is bigger than tech: it is really a story about the transformation of markets. From the auction theories that power Google's ad sales algorithms to the models that online retailers use to prevent internet fraud, even the most high-tech modern businesses are empowered by theory first envisioned by economists.

And we're all participants in this revolution. Every time you book a room on Airbnb, hire a car on Uber, or click on an ad, you too are reshaping our social institutions and our lives.

THE INNER LIVES OF MARKETS is necessary reading for the modern world: it reveals the blueprint for how we work, live, and shop, and offers wisdom for how to do it better.

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Ray Fisman

Ray Fisman is the Lambert Family Professor of Social Enterprise and Research Director of the Social Enterprise Program at the Columbia Business School. He received his Ph.D. in Business Economics from Harvard University, and his work has been covered widely in the popular press, from Maureen Dowd in the New York Times to Al Jazeera to the Shanghai Daily. He also writes a monthly column for Slate. His first book, Economic Gangsters (with Ted Miguel), was published to great critical acclaim by Princeton University Press in 2008.

Tim Sullivan is an executive editor at Harvard Business Books. He has also worked at Basic Books, Portfolio, and Princeton University Press, and has worked with some of the world's leading economists.

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