Friday, March 10, 2006

Gladwell on Freakonomics

In an interesting post Gladwell talks about his views on Freakonomics .He says” In fact, "Freakonomics" specially singles out for ridicule the theory of broken windows, which I suggest in the Tipping Point played a big role in New York City’s recovery. So what gives? Why do I love a book so much, if it contradicts my own book? Have I renounced the theories I put forward in the Tipping Point?
The Freakonomics argument starts off very much like the argument I make in The Tipping Point. The startling decline in crime in major American cities in the mid-1990’s is a mystery. No one predicted it. Everyone thought that high crime rates were a permanent feature of urban life. And the standard arguments to explain why crime falls don’t seem to work in this case. Levitt and Dubner go through all the usual explanations for crime decreases—a booming economy, decline in the crack trade, innovative policing strategies, tougher gun laws, aging of the population—and find only two that they think really matter.

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