Russ Roberts


Russ Roberts is the President of Shalem College in Jerusalem, the John and Jean De Nault Research Fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, and has been the host of the Econ Talk podcast since 2006, where he has featured thinkers such as Milton Friedman, Christopher Hitchens, and Thomas Piketty. Roberts earned his Bachelor's Degree in Economics from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, and his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Chicago. Roberts is the author of many books, his most recent being Wild Problems: A Guide to the Decisions That Define Us(2022). Through the book Roberts examines the difficulty in making consequential life decisions when there's little evidence to guide those decisions. Roberts encourages readers to focus on who they are through the guiding principles of human flourishing and a life well-lived, and to view these decisions as mysteries instead of obstacles or roadblocks. His other books include How Adam Smith Can Change Your Life: An Unexpected Guide to Human Nature and Happiness (Portfolio/Penguin 2014), Gambling With Other People’s Money: How Perverse Incentives Caused the Financial Crisis, and the three fiction books discussing economic principles and lessons, The Price of Everything: A Parable of Possibility and Prosperity (Princeton University Press, 2008), The Invisible Heart: An Economic Romance (MIT Press, 2002), and his first book The Choice: A Fable of Free Trade and Protectionism. Roberts' research has also been published in academic journals such as the Journal of Political Economy, the Journal of Law and Economics, and the Journal of Legal Studies. Roberts has extensive teaching experience at a variety of the nation's top universities such as George Mason University, Washington University in St. Louis (where he was the founding director of what is now the Center for Experiential Learning), the University of Rochester, Stanford University, and the University of California, Los Angeles. Roberts has also published an animated poem discussing emergent order, It's a Wonderful Loaf, hosts a video series, called The Numbers Game, about the difficulty in accurately measuring economic progress, and, along with filmmaker John Papola, has created two highly successful educational rap videos on the ideas of John Maynard Keynes and Friedrich von Hayek.