Per Bylund’s latest book title How to think about economics A brief introduction to the Austrian School of Economics in just under 150 pages. It includes chapters on entrepreneurship, economic calculations, business cycles, regulation, and other topics that typically preoccupy scholars in this tradition. It seeks to achieve financial literacy in a quick and reader-friendly manner. Many people know him for his books Production Problems: A New Theory of the Firm And Seen, unseen and unreal: How rules affect our daily lives. He is also a Fellow of the Institute of Ms.
Professor Billund’s engaging writing is perfect for a newcomer to economics. He manages to make the concepts simple enough that the inexperienced reader can understand them, but not so simple as to become meaningless. The knowledge gained from the book will be sufficient for readers to move on to other books of the Austrian school. At the end of the book, Bylund provides us with a useful list of related reading. I recommend watching it for anyone interested in learning more. Going to be my personal advice Economics in a lesson After finishing this.
It is inevitable that people will compare this book with other primers on Austrian economics and free market economics more broadly. Indeed, there are many pop econ books out there – why is this one special? Why not Robert Murphy? Likes: Collaboration, Enterprise and Human Action or Introduction to Austrian Economics? These are just a small part of a huge list of books that fit this category. I liked this book because it was entertaining to read and Bylund was straightforward and easy to follow. He doesn’t bombard you with information. It can be easy for someone new to economics or any other field of study to get lost when too much is presented at once. This book is a good stepping stone for later attempts at more complex work.
One thing that every reader should remember is that he is reading an introduction Austrian Economics, which differs significantly from the orthodox approach in many ways. Bylund’s analysis of praxology, business cycle theory, monetary intervention, and the minimum wage would go against what is commonly taught in most elementary economics courses. Does this mean the Austrians and especially Bylund are wrong? This is a very difficult question to fit into a book review, but my short answer would be that it is a very good method that, if not adopted, should at least be carefully studied. From Karl Menger to Murray Rothbard, Austrians have participated in most of the important economic debates, and their writings on everything from marginal utility to economic calculus are always of interest.
One small issue I would like to mention is that since this book is an introduction to the Austrian school specifically, it does not cover some commonly discussed topics such as international trade or income inequality. The reader will not have much trouble learning about these topics from other mainstream books or online resources, but it bears mentioning.
Who should read this book? If you want an introduction to Austrian economics, by all means go ahead and read this. If you want an introduction to mainstream economics, try something else and read the book at a later date when you have a firmer grounding in the orthodox approach.
Chris Lucas was born in Greece and is an economic journalist and bronze medalist at the 2022 International Economics Olympiad. His articles have been featured by the Foundation for Economic Education, Ms. Institute, and Adam Smith Works.