Friday, September 09, 2011

Google Trends Delivers a Verdict on Which Economist the Public Cares About

A non-random sampling of blog posts suggests that Paul Krugman is our "public intellectual".  To test this claim, I asked Google Trends to provide me with the data with a head to head competition between Larry Summers and Paul Krugman.    I figure that these Cambridge Titans have a long running friendly competition so let's take a look at look at the facts from 2004 until the present.

The data suggests that Krugman wins by knockout. He is in the blue trunks and Summers is graphed in the Crimson color.  I take such "search results" seriously because it is a quick revealed preference test of what the masses who use Google care about.  This isn't "cheap talk".    Matthew Kotchen and I have used this tool in our own environmental research.

Now, Dr K. shouldn't get too cocky.  He doesn't compete that well against Lady Gaga.