An epidemiologist (who is also an economist) responds

Matthew Bonds, who is at Harvard, wrote this response to my original post on epidemiologists.  I am offering it in its entirety, click here.

Here is the first paragraph:

Since the novel coronavirus outbreak turned into a global health and economic crisis, one of the few silver linings has been unprecedented collaboration across spheres of science, innovation, and policy that have potential for long-term benefits. My training is in economics (PhD) and ecology (PhD) with a specialty in infectious disease modeling. Over the past decade, I have focused on implementing global health delivery programs where the lack of models and technical solutions are rarely the biggest problem – instead, the challenge often lies with breakdowns in the systems of delivering those solutions. That is not the case with COVID-19. We do not have solutions at our fingertips. We do not know the full scope of the problem, and consequently how to best navigate policy tradeoffs. So, I was dismayed to read, “What does this economist think of epidemiologists?” by Tyler Cowen, which struck me as a reinforcement (maybe even a celebration?) of boundaries that do more harm than good.

Do read the whole thing, and note that Bonds wrote his economics dissertation with Dwight Lee (a former co-author of mine) at the University of Georgia.  Here is the home page of Matthew Bonds.


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