Monday, November 17, 2014
100 Best Professors Who Blog
These professors discuss anything and everything.
- Tomorrow’s Professor: Get a look into what the future holds for professors from Tomorrow’s Professor.
- The Thoughts of a Frumpy Professor: This professor shares thoughts of a small town, middle aged professor.
- Terminal Degree: Terminal Degree writes about the tenure track.
Visit these blogs to learn from business professors.
- Professor Michael Roberto: Professor and author Michael Roberto blogs about leadership, decision making, and competitive strategy.
- Tom Davenport: Check out Tom Davenport’s blog to get insight into information technology and management.
- Billso: Learn about management, mobile computing, and information systems from Bill Sodeman.
- Sustainable Business Design: Read this blog to look into the intersection of economic, social, and environmental interests.
- MarketingProfs Daily Fix: This blog offers a daily dose of marketing education.
- Deal Professor: Professor Davidoff discusses mergers and acquisitions on this blog.
- Work Matters: Get a look into the links between managerial knowledge and action from Bob Sutton.
- The Near Futurist: John Sviokla writes about the coming future of business.
- Robert Salomon’s Blog: Robert Salomon is an associate professor of management at the Stern School of Business.
- Managerial Econ: Check out this blog about economic analysis of business practice.
- Yoko Ishikura: Yoko Ishikura offers a discussion on corporate strategy, competitiveness, and more.
Math & Science
These blogs are written by top math and science professors.
- Nerdy Science Blog: Get nerdy about science on this blog.
- Female Science Professor: This professor offers a glimpse into the life of a female science professor.
- Bad Astronomy: Check out Bad Astronomy to learn from professor Phil Plait.
- Sciencewomen: This scientist and engineer discuss the changes they want to see in science.
- Impact Lab: The Impact Lab offers a look into the future of human experience.
- EvolutionBlog: EvolutionBlog is about the dispute between evolution and creationism.
- YoungFemaleScientist: Read about the life and work of a young female scientist on this blog.
- Cosmic Variance: This group blog is all about physicists and astrophysicists.
- Pharyngula: PZ Myers, a biologist, writes Pharyngula.
- Medical Futility Blog: Thaddeus Pope writes about policy and developments in medical futility.
- Dr. Wes: Westby G. Fisher discusses cardiology and internal medicine.
- Neurotopia: Learn about neuroscience on Neurotopia.
- Drug Monkey: These bloggers work as scientists in biomedical and basic science.
- BrainBlog: On BrainBlog, you’ll read about the brain and behavior.
- Ourboros: Ourboros discusses research in the biology of aging.
- Professor Astronomy: Professor Astronomy will help you keep up with the latest in astronomy.
- NeuroDojo: Train your brain with the NeuroDojo blog.
- The Mind of Dr. Pion: Read ravings on physics, politics, education, monitoring, and more.
- Janus Professor: Janus Professor writes about travels in a two-body life.
- EagerEyes: Get a look into visualization and visual communications through this blog.
- Science Musings Blog: You can learn about science musings on this blog.
- The Blog Prof: The Blog Prof is an associate professor of engineering discussing politics, science, and more.
- RealClimate: RealClimate is all about climate science.
- Explorations in Science: Explore science with Dr. Michio Kaku, professor and popularizer of science.
With these blogs, you’ll be able to learn from technology professors.
- Andrew McAfee: Andrew McAfee discusses the business impact of IT.
- Shtetl-Optimized: Scott Aaronson’s blog discusses quantum computers and more.
- Details of a Global Brain: Read this blog about interface, interaction, and information design.
- Open IT Strategies: Joel West offers a look at the use of open-ness as a competitive strategy.
- Knowing and Doing: Read Knowing and Doing to find the reflections of an academic and computer scientist.
- Harga-Blog: Andrew Hargadon’s blog is a conversation about technology, design, and creativity.
- Technology and Organizations: Read Terri Griffith’s blog to learn about technology and organizations.
- Technology & Marketing Law Blog: Check out what Eric Goldman has to say about the laws of technology and marketing.
Law & Politics
Check out these blogs written by professors of politics and law.
- ImmigrationProf Blog: These bloggers offer a law professor’s view on immigration.
- TaxProf Blog: Paul Caron is a professor of tax law at the University of Cincinnati.
- Patently-O: This blog offers a look into patent law.
- Instapundit: Glenn Reynolds is a law professor, author, and more.
- ProfessorBainbridge: Check out this blog to read about the life and work of a corporate law professor.
- The Volokh Conspiracy: The Volokh Conspiracy offers a look into the US legal system and courts.
- Concurring Opinions: Concurring Opinions discusses the law, universe, and more.
- PoliBlog: Read about the master science of politics on PoliBlog.
- The Faculty Lounge: On this blog, you’ll find conversations about law, culture, and academia.
- Discourse: Discourse writes from the fringes of the public sphere.
- The Hugh Hewitt Show: Hugh Hewitt discusses politics and current events.
- Indisputably: On this blog, you’ll learn about negotiation, mediation, arbitration, and dispute resolution.
Get a look into history from these professors’ blogs.
- The Cranky Professor: This professor offers a cranky view on history.
- PaleoJudaica: PaleoJudaica offers a look into historic Judaism.
- Informed Comment: This president of the Global Americana Institute discusses thoughts on the Middle East, history, and religion.
- Tenured Radical: Tenured Radical is a professor of history and American studies.
- English Eclectic: English Eclectic offers perspectives from an English historian.
- Scattered & Random: Scattered & Random writes about history, power, politics, teaching, and more.
- The Little Professor: The Little Professor writes about things Victorian and academic.
- Liberty & Power: This group blog offers historic insight from George Mason University professors.
- Blogenspiel: This "Damned Medievalist" delivers her spiel on this blog.
- Cliopatria: Follow this blog to learn about the past, present, and future.
Read these blogs about economics and finance written by economics professors.
- Brad DeLong’s Semi-Daily Journal: You’ll find the semi daily musings of an economics professor from Berkeley on this blog.
- The Transportationist: David Levinson’s blog is about networks, economics, and urban systems.
- Financial Literacy and Ignorance: This blog considers how very little people know about personal finance.
- Organizations and Markets: You can learn about organizations and markets from this group blog.
- Infectious Greed: Paul Kedrosky writes about finance and the money culture.
- Core Economics: Core Economics offers commentary on economics, strategy, and more.
- ProfessorVC: You can learn about entrepreneurial finance from Steve Bennet.
- FinanceProfessor: This finance professor reminds readers that finance is important and fun.
- Greg Mankiw’s Blog: Greg Mankiw writes random observations for students of economics.
- The Wages of Wins Journal: The Wages of Wins examines the economics of professional sports.
- Angry Bear: Read economic commentary that’s slightly left of center on Angry Beat.
- Economist’s View: Mark Thoma, an economist from University of Oregon, offers his view.
- Carpe Diem: Professor Mark J. Perry writes this blog about economics and finance.
- Marginal Revolution: This blog writes about small steps toward a better world.
- Division of Labour: Read this blog to learn more about labor.
Arts, Liberal Arts & Social Science
Study the arts, literature, social science and more on these professors’ blogs.
- Planned Obsolescence: Kathleen Fitzpatrick writes this blog about the disposable nature of goods.
- Kieran Healy: Kieran Healy is interested in economic sociology organizations, and culture.
- Prof. Dr. Lakshman Madurasinghe: Check out this blog to learn from a lawyer and consultant psychologist.
- AKMA’s Random Thoughts: AKM Adam is a professor of the New Testament.
- Maverick Philosopher: This blog offers a variety of footnotes on philosophy.
- Prof. John Stackhouse’s Blog: Professor John Stackhouse offers a conversation on theology and Christianity.
- Cronaca: Cronaca is about news in art, archaeology, and history.
- The Chutry Experiment: Chuck Tryon, an assistant professor of film and media studies, writes this blog.
- Social Science Statistics Blog: Find conversations about social science statistical methods and analysis on this blog.
- Cognitive Daily: Cognitive Daily shares a new cognitive psychology article nearly every day.
- Curious? Blog: Todd Kashdan’s blog will feed your curiosity.
Read these blogs to learn about what’s happening in education.
- Teaching Professor: The Teaching Professor works to educate, engage, and inspire.
- Critical Mass: Erin O’Connor writes about the state of academia in America.
- University Diaries: University Diaries is a description of university life from a professor of English who wants to change things.
- Easily Distracted: Easily Distracted is all about culture, politics, academia, and more.
- Dangerously Irrelevant: Dangerously Irrelevant is about thoughts on technology, leadership, and the future of schools.
- How The University Works: Learn about the tuition gold rush from this blog.
Posted by Haile at 4:32 PM
Uber is a technology company currently operating as a market maker in the public transportation sphere. The company uses its own smart phone application to connect passengers with drivers with vehicles for hire; whereby customers use the app to request rides and track their reserved vehicle's location. Uber at present is being overwhelmed by criticism from various groups, including city officials, regulators and especially from taxi companies who are annoyed by increased competition and feel their business is threatened by another highly technological taxi company. The reason for this anxiety is how Uber operates. Uber has neither vehicles of its own nor its own drivers. It instead partners with limousine services who can provide cars as well as drivers and work on contractual basis. My argument is that Uber will keep its brand strong by not abandoning their pricing model and that the price surges are necessary to sustain its business.
Price surges happen because of a high demand. These prices are often calculated by an algorithm that considers a variety of inputs such as fuel, distance, holidays, hour of the day, weather and many other factors. In contrast, a non surge price time is a period where supply and demand are almost at equilibrium. During these time periods, Uber passengers are paying the predetermined standard rates, which include minimum fares. Now, the primary challenge for Uber is striking that balance of demand to supply and doing it so without having full control of the supply side and be consistent with it. A similar analogy can be seen in liquidity providers in financial firms or otherwise known as the market makers.
During high demand period, let’s say, after a soccer game in downtown, there will be more people who will be looking to take a ride home. This creates a situation where there are few cars and more people and so eventually Uber cars go to those who pay much more. Uber declares this as basic economics, it is. However, Uber also claims this incentivize drivers and maximize the number of cars on the road (Uber, 2012). I tend to not agree; I argue that more, if not all Uber drivers are already on the streets to take advantage of these price surges that are sometimes go up to 6 times the standard fares. I believe the broader interpretation to this is that, it is a systematic way to preserve the integrity of the product’s brand more than the profit it takes from price on such events. This is because due to peak hours, the car supply is already at its upper limit. Given that Uber driver base is also limited, true demand has the potential to move beyond the available car supply entirely, creating market inefficiency unless drastic price increases are applied. When a passenger now opens his Uber mobile app and checks the price for going home, He can see there are Uber cars available but with a much higher price that he or others are not ready to pay for yet. On the other side of the market, the Uber drivers will be waiting in their empty cars to see who takes this price and go home. In effect, less passengers and Uber cars are actually on the road doing business. While this means less revenue for Uber and getting home late for passengers, the Uber brand is up and running flawlessly waiting for market participants to lead themselves to equilibrium. So in essence it is relatively better for Uber that its customers found themselves with higher prices than not knowing if the Uber taxis will be available when they were most needed. It’s also important to suggest that “successful brands create strong, positive and lasting impressions through their communication and associated psychological feels and not only their functional use “(Paul & Chris,2013).
Uber has also another set of challenges. James argues “Uber is currently combating the sense that transportation is, in some sense, a public utility, and that it is offensive to charge people much more than they are used to paying” (James, 2014) and thus must be regulated. The problem is that regulations have a poor track record for improving efficiency or service. Instead regulation has a good record on improving things like safety and fairness. In my opinion, Uber is trying to provide customers all these: efficient services, safety and fairness. While the concepts and implementation of efficient services and safety can be articulated, fairness is delicate to put in the same measurement bar. What’s fair price to one individual may not be fair to another. Uber has been open about price prediction in cases of public events such as holidays, although I also think that it’s somehow a confirmation bias for customers - the tendency to look for and be provided with information that confirms what is already known (Nickerson, 1998). In light of this, it is then fair to pay to what one has also confirmed to himself or herself. The Uber dynamic pricing model in my views is not random or at least it should not be. If one has a history of paying more than the standard price, the price modeling algorithm should likely show patterns of prices that the customer is more comfortable in accepting, creating seemingly perfect price discrimination – paying for what one assumes is appropriate or fair for his own personal taste, and this in my views is a good thing.
As I stated in my first sentence, Uber is a technology company operating in the transportation sector for now and opportunities here are still are still untapped. Nevertheless, Uber is in a strategic position to venture into other forms of business such as logistics and from the very optimistic views of one of the Uber’s investors, this is worth as much as a trillion dollar (Bill Gurley, 2014).Thus, another reason why their dynamic pricing model should stay secret is, if once reveled in the transportation context, the details of which can adapted and be used against them by competitors, already established firms or new startups like Nimbl, which could make Uber block itself out of a completely new market.
Uber (2012).”Clean and Straight forward Surge pricing” http://blog.uber.com/2012/03/14/clear-and-straight-forward-surge-pricing/ [18 Oct. 2014].
Paul,Chris & kelly. (2013). “Essentials of Marketing”, Oxford, London, 4th edition. pp. 201.
James. (2014). “In praise of efficient price gouging” http://www.technologyreview.com/review/529961/in-praise-of-efficient-price-gouging/ [18 Oct. 2014].
Nickerson, R. S. (1998).” Confirmation bias, A Ubiquitous phenomena in many guises. “Review of General Psychology 2(2), 175–220.
Bill Gurley. (2014).”Uber investor bill gurley defends valuation” http://www.businessinsider.com/uber-investor-bill-gurley-defends-valuation-2014-7[18 Oct. 2014].
Posted by Haile at 10:11 AM