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Economics

Did Congress Just Fix Surprise Medical Billing?

A new federal law prevents patients from being billed by out-of-network doctors after being treated in an in-network hospital. We asked Prof. Fiona Scott Morton, whose research helped bring the practice to light, what the new law will mean for patients and healthcare costs.

An emergency room in Moreno Valley, California, in May 2020. Photo: Gina Ferazzi/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images.
  • What is ecological economics?

    Robert Costanza is one of the founders of a trans-disciplinary effort to understand how economics is embedded in the broader ecosystem that supports all human activity. From this perspective, he sees both limits for economic growth and opportunities to improve long-term human well- being.
  • What are the economics of happiness?

    Economists have begun to use research into happiness to explore questions in economics, policy, and management. Betsey Stevenson of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania surveys the work in this emerging field.
  • What are you thinking?

    Decades of economic research have assumed people pursue their goals in a rational manner, discounting the effects of emotion, bias, error, and other irrational forces. Robert Shiller argues that economists need to take a closer look at how people make decisions.
  • Is globalization endangered?

    The global economy is in a severe slowdown. GDPs are dropping, the rosters of the unemployed are getting longer, and there’s no obvious resolution in sight. Will the effects of this economic crisis — and of government responses — threaten the system of commercial relationships that has developed over the last 30 years?
  • What's the new capital up to?

    Larry Summers has analyzed macroeconomic policies as a top academic economist, and helped form those policies in positions such as secretary of the treasury. He provides his take on the new forms of capital that are likely to affect markets, economies, and lives in the years ahead.
  • Can we manage with(out) markets?

    "Markets are a special set of rules of the game that define institutions to enable mass exchange of resources at a low cost." This is Martin Shubik's one-sentence definition of what a market is. Embedded in its few words are all the complexity and variation in how rules and institutions affect a market's functioning.
    Martin Shubik
  • How do you face the unknown?

    Nature abhors a vacuum. Air invades emptiness. Water floods open space. What happens when a wall is breached and markets are allowed to enter countries where they’d previously been banned? In the 1990s, Rosemary Ripley participated in the infusion of private enterprise into former command economies.