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Episode Info: Today, we welcome to the show for a 3rd time, the one and only Tim Harford. Tim is an economist, author, TED speaker, journalist and broadcaster. He is author of “Messy” and the million-selling “The Undercover Economist”, a senior columnist at the Financial Times, and the presenter of Radio 4’s “More or Less” and host of the popular BBC podcast, “50 Things That Made the Modern Economy”, which is incidentally enough, the name of his new book and the subject of today’s conversation. From the plough to artificial intelligence, from Gillette disposable razor to Ikea’s Billy bookcase, Tim recounts each invention’s own memorable story and introduces you to the characters who developed them, profited from them, and were ruined by them. Former Future Squared guest and widely respected economist and custodian of MarginalRevolution.com, Tyler Cowen, says that Tim’s new book “reaffirms his status as one of the great (greatest?) contemporary popular writers on economics”. Tim and I  go an inch deep and a mile wide in this episode. In particular, we discuss 3 key topics: Why most companies that invest in technology and innovation fail and what those that succeed do differently What should Government’s role be in developing and regulating technology Why we shouldn’t be looking at emerging technologies in isolation and how the most transformative technologies often aren’t the most glamorous I really enjoyed my last two conversations with Tim as well as the 50 Things podcast so couldn’t wait to have him back on the show to broaden my thinking so with that, I bring you, Tim Harford.  Topics discussed: The inspiration for the podcast and book How inventions and innovations often have far reaching and unexpected implicationsRead more »

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