Garett Jones is an economist (focused mostly on macroeconomics) holding joint titles of associate professor at George Mason University and BB&T Professor for the Study of Capitalism at the Mercatus Center. He is associate editor of The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics and sits on the editorial board of the Journal of Neuroscience, Psychology, and Economics. He was a guest blogger for EconLog from September 2012 to April 2013. Jones' research has included monetary policy and its role in short-term business cycles, as well as IQ and its relation to productivity and economic development.
Jones completed a B.A. in history with a minor in sociology from Brigham Young University in 1992. He did a M.P.A. in public affairs from Cornell University in 1993, followed by a M.A. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley in 1994. Jones completed a Ph.D. in economics at the University of California, San Diego in 2000. After holding a number of visiting scholar and other academic positions, Jones joined the faculty of George Mason University in 2007.
Research on IQ and its role in productivity and economic growth
Jones started his research on IQ in a paper with Schneider in 2006 that argued that IQ is a statistically significant explanatory variable of economic growth, thus agreeing broadly with the thesis advanced by Richard Lynn and Tatu Vanhanen in their book IQ and the Wealth of Nations. The chief observation that Jones made, and popularized, is that national IQs have much greater predictive power for individual earnings than the individual's IQ.
Jones' further research has been on identifying the causal mechanisms by which IQ might affect productivity and economic growth at a national level. One mechanism posited by Jones is that smarter groups tend to be better at arriving at and enforcing norms of cooperation. Jones has used laboratory experiments involving repeated prisoner's dilemma, combined with the SAT scores of participants, to offer support for this hypothesis. Jones has also suggested that patience and delayed gratification might offer an explanation. Jones has also argued that certain sectors requiring very high quality work and with very low error-tolerance can only exist and thrive given access to a high-IQ population, because in such sectors, it is not possible to replace a single high-IQ worker by multiple low-IQ workers and achieve the same output. Jones informally dubs such sectors "O-Ring sectors" in contrast to "foolproof sectors" where a larger workforce of people with lower productivity can produce the same output as a smaller workforce of people with high productivity.
Research on money
As of January 2013, Garett Jones is working on a book titled The Hive Mind which builds on his research on the relationship between IQ and national productivity.
In September 2012, Garett Jones joined EconLog as a guest blogger. Jones has blogged about the works of many economists such as James Buchanan, Lant Pritchett, and others, often putting emphasis on under-appreciated aspects of their work and unorthodox conclusions that can be drawn from it. Jones' blogging stint at EconLog ended in April 2013.
In January 2013, Jones wrote two critical posts regarding how the calculation of gross domestic product favored wasteful government hiring and purchase decisions. These were picked up across the blogosphere, including by Veronique de Rugy on the website of National Review.
- "Garett Jones". Retrieved 2013-01-30.
- Jones, Garett. "Curriculum Vitae" (PDF). Retrieved 2013-01-30.
- Garett Jones & W. Schneider, (2006). Intelligence, Human Capital, and Economic Growth: A Bayesian Averaging of Classical Estimates (BACE) approach. Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 71–93, 03.
- Jones, Garett. "Are Smarter Groups More Cooperative".
- "Patience, Cognitive Skill, and Coordination in the Repeated Stag Hunt".
- Jones, Garett. "The O-Ring Sector and the Foolproof Sector: An Explanation for Skill Externalities" (PDF).
- Jones, Garett. "IQ and National Productivity" (PDF).
- Jones, Garett. "On Money and Output: Is money redundant?".
- Jones, Garett. "Dynamic IS Curves With and Without Money: An international comparison".
- Jones, Garett. "Speed Bankruptcy: A Firewall to Future Crises" (PDF).
- Caplan, Bryan (2012-09-10). "Welcome Guest Blogger Garett Jones". EconLog. Retrieved 2013-01-30.
- Jones, Garett (2012-09-10). "First Things". EconLog. Retrieved 2013-01-30.
- Jones, Garett (2013-01-11). "Buchanan: Seeing with New Eyes". EconLog. Retrieved 2013-01-30.
- Jones, Garett (2012-10-29). "Did Nations that Boosted Education Grow Faster?". EconLog. Retrieved 2013-01-30.
- Jones, Garett (2013-04-22). "Fictional Hillary Clinton and the Real Cost of Political Egalitarianism". EconLog. Retrieved 2013-04-23.
- Jones, Garett (2013-01-25). "Government Hiring: Raising GDP by Definition". EconLog. Retrieved 2013-02-01.
- Jones, Garett (2013-01-31). "Wasteful Hiring: When Does It Cut Profits?". Retrieved 2013-02-01.
- de Rugy, Veronique (2013-01-30). "Government Spending and GDP". National Review. Retrieved 2013-02-01.
- de Rugy, Veronique (2013-01-31). "More on Government Spending and GDP". National Review. Retrieved 2013-02-01.
- "Garett Jones discusses the Financial Crisis in Europe on CNBC Asia". Mercatus Center. 2012-06-26. Retrieved 2013-01-30.
- "Media Clippings by Garett Jones". Mercatus Center. Retrieved 2013-01-30.