Mike Pottenger

Mike Pottenger

When not thinking up a monthly blog for the ESSA (feel free to request a topic!), Mike lectures in statistics and political economy at the University of Melbourne. His research focuses on corruption and organised crime and the many connections between political and economic theory, including the application of behavioural economic theory to international political economy. He has a tendency to overthink things, and to do so in the context of economic principles. You can follow him at @Mike_Pottenger.

For first year university students studying commerce

By · March 12th, 2014

Dr Mike Pottenger explains the utility of the skills to be learned from the compulsory first-year statistics unit, in the context of a zombie apocalypse.

Should you consider a career in academia?

By · February 28th, 2014

Do you possess an insatiable thirst for knowledge? Mike Pottenger recounts his journey to becoming an academic and shares a few valuable pointers for anyone considering doing the same.

A matter of sensitivity: elasticity and people smuggling

By · October 17th, 2013

How can we know if government policy really will ‘break’ the people smugglers’ business model? Mike Pottenger weighs in on elasticities of demand and supply in the market for seeking asylum.

Social media, social capital and… lolcats?

By · September 19th, 2013

University of Melbourne Lecturer Mike Pottenger examines how social media stacks up to economic analysis.

It’s the (illegal) economy, stupid: the ACC on organised crime

By · August 12th, 2013

In his recent piece in The Conversation, Mike Pottenger discusses the complexities of organised crime in Australia, and contends that such “organised” criminal activity is being driven by the market.

Exec pay in Australia – do the rich get richer?

By · July 1st, 2013

University of Melbourne Lecturer Mike Pottenger discusses executive remuneration and the possible existence of a “great compression” in income gaps.

Statistics, social science, and the media

By · April 26th, 2013

In research, definitive answers are anything but. Only cautiously careful reading can beget the full picture.

Three ways economics can make you a better student

By · February 28th, 2013

Studying economics can come with added benefits – you might learn to study smarter. Tips and tricks within!

Not fun and games: organised crime and sport

By · February 8th, 2013

There is no excuse for doping, but the underlying incentives show why some medical practitioners and athletes cross the line.

What Economics Can Teach Us About Batman

By · January 13th, 2013

Despite his overwhelming success in the box office, Batman has some serious questions to answer about his capacity to exact lasting change on the corrupt city of Gotham.

A hell of an incentive for murder: a rationalist’s guide to suicide

By · October 28th, 2012

A morbid example of when incentives produce gruesome behaviour.

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