Santa Fe Institute
Knowledge, Prosperity, and Economic Complexity
Prosperity is associated with technological progress, which is related to advances in scientific and productive knowledge. But where is that knowledge embedded? How is it put to use? And what kind of social structures does it give rise to?This lecture will shed light on why the world is so unequal, why and how some laggard countries catch up and others fall further behind, why inequality within countries is so large, why we need governments and why it is so hard for people to get along. At the core of it all is a view of society as a social brain that has distributed knowledge that must be linked together through complex networks in order to be used. This gives rise to economic complexity and both its convenient and inconvenient implications. Ricardo Hausmann is Director of the Center for International Development and professor of the Practice of Economic Development, both at Harvard. He earned a PhD in economics at Cornell University. He served as the first chief economist of the Inter-American Development Bank and as chair of the IMF-World Bank Development Committee. His research interests include issues of growth, macroeconomic stability, international finance, and the social dimensions of development.