Ben Casnocha blogs my Zurich talk

Here is his very useful account, including a good photo.  Excerpt:

Cowen made an interesting point about young people. He said America
empowers youth as influencers — college students sit around and listen
to music, start fads, build web sites, etc. They may not be "working"
per se, but they are contributing enormously to American popular
culture. Indeed, most of our popular culture is created by young
people, and this is the culture that is exported abroad. If a country
cares about the influence of its culture abroad, they should ask how
much power is given to youth. He noted that Latin America and Asia have
huge youth populations, making it prime for a lot of cultural influence
in this next generation.

Another question I discussed was why Switzerland has such an excellent culture of museums, opera, theatre, and architecture, but has done so poorly in exporting popular music and cinema.  The use of cities and cantons to fund the arts may be a central factor.  Intense Tiebout competition leads to quality local services but fewer national public goods (to the extent such cultural exports are public goods).

Ben is an MR reader who emailed me and tracked me down, here is his blog.


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