Micromotives and Macrobehavior Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Thomas Schelling
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Schelling say the number of bikes stolen is almost identical to?

2. What natural phenomenon does Schelling compare the economy to?

3. What does Schelling say is the result if aggregate behavior results from a small number of variables?

4. What does Schelling say governs each decision?

5. What example from human psychology does Schelling contrapose to conscious choice?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Schelling say segregation and separation, sharing and mixing have in common?

2. How does Schelling describe segregation?

3. What is the open model, in Schelling's analysis?

4. How does Schelling define equilibrium?

5. What is an externality?

6. How many possible genetic variations can result when two people have a baby together?

7. How does Schelling say technology has changed the number of genetic outcomes that can result when a man and a woman conceive?

8. In what way does Schelling say the shop owner's exchange of a bicycle for $150 of the customer's money--when the owner paid $90 for the bicycle--an equal exchange?

9. Where does the equivalence of terms in an economic break down, in Schelling's analysis?

10. What is a closed model, in Schelling's analysis?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Schelling describes underlying assumptions as being difficult to account for in economic models of social behavior. What methods does Schelling use for making this accounting, and where does his social science begin to need psychological language for unconscious behaviors? In other words, what behaviors do Schelling's models still fail to account for, and is there a point beyond which these economic models cannot go, in estimating individual behavior or accounting for micromotives behind macrobehavior? Will there always be an ultimate 'theory of no guarantees' behind the models?

Essay Topic 2

Which models are most convincing in predicting outcomes, and which models are least convincing? Describe a case where a model lines up neatly with phenomena, and another case where a model fails to account for behavior.

Essay Topic 3

Schelling seems to be making the point that segregation may be a social problem, but it is being acted out by individuals. Is his account complete, or is there an extent to which social behaviors are influenced by institutions and ideologies and unofficial policies? What role do these things play in segregation?

(see the answer keys)

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