Econ 101: A Hacker's Guide to the Economy

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Hackers around the world share a vision for a utopian society that uses technology to enable humanity to prosper. But how do we make this utopia a reality? What changes are necessary to our current societal order?

To answer these questions, a comprehensive understanding of our current economic system, capitalism, is fundamental. Econ 101 is a series of meetups, where we try to construct this very understanding and challenge the ideas we have about the inner works of our economy. None of us is an economist and we all come from different backgrounds – IT security, digital rights campaigning, feminist activism,… – and yet we want to explore this field in an open debate that allows us to sharpen our analysis and critique.

Together, we will read The Economy, a free and open textbook created by CORE, a global community of learners, teachers and researchers in the field of economics. It is used by universities around the globe as an alternative introductory textbook: “Our focus on these real-world problems explains why we called this book The Economy rather than Economics, which is the standard title for introductory texts. The economy is something in the real world. It governs how we interact with each other and with our natural environments in producing the goods and services on which we live. In contrast, economics is a way of understanding that economy, based on facts, concepts and models. The Economy is a course in economics. Throughout, we start with a question or a problem about the economy—why the advent of capitalism is associated with a sharp increase in average living standards, for example—and then teach the tools of economics that contribute to an answer.”

Join us on this journey! Our next meetup will take place on Wednesday, October 16 at 19:00h at Metalab, Rathausstraße 6, 1010 Wien in the Library. Please make sure to read the agreed text, and feel free to bring your questions, notes and thoughts. As our main course literature is written in English, we will use this language for our conversations as well. This meetup is open to everyone who is interested and especially to you, who feels equally confused by terms like GDP, bonds and swaps as we do.

At our upcoming meeting we will do a recap of Chapter 3, 4, and 5, so please make sure to read it. If you wanted to join earlier but never found the time, now's your chance!

Previous meetings:

  • July 3, 2019: Chapter 1.1 to 1.3
  • July 10, 2019: Chapter 1.4 to 1.13
  • July 17, 2019: Chapter 2.1 to 2.5
  • July 24, 2019: Chapter 2.6 to 2.12
  • July 31, 2019: Chapter 3
  • August 28, 2019: Chapter 4.1 to 4.8
  • September 4, 2019: Chapter 4.9 to 4.13
  • September 18, 2019: Chapter 5.1 to 5.7
  • September 25, 2019: Chapter 5.8 to 5.13
  • October 9, 2019: Recap and quizzes of Chapter 1 and 2

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