Tuesday archive: Fried chicken versus fresh air

From 4th March 2006:

Family Harford is now safely installed in one of the grimmest parts of Hackney. Just outside the back door is a “massage parlour”, a kebab shop, a jerk chicken joint and a betting shop, not to mention flowers for the young man who was recently shot dead outside a local nightclub. At the front is a row of abandoned cars, courtesy of the garage just across the road and the other one just round the corner. Delis are there none.
Cities are agglomerations of bright lights and skyscrapers, but also of sharp elbows and grime. Technically speaking, they are collections of “externalities”. An externality is a cost or a benefit that affects bystanders. Aficionados of economics lectures will recall the quintessential example of the pollution from a factory that damages the business of the fish farm downstream.

Continued at timharford.com.

Tim Harford’s blog

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Tim, also known as the Undercover Economist, writes about the economics of everyday life.