Ariely’s Honest Truth

1. Ariely’s Honest Truth took a close look at our human frailty when it comes to ethics and commitments. Based on Ariely’s book, on the one hand one might argue that we need structure and constraints to protect ourselves and our society from our own imperfections, and yet, on the other hand it may be argued that those charged with regulating and controlling the rest of us are just as imperfect and thus that we should be skeptical of centralized regulatory powers.

Clearly, we need government regulations on a variety of different aspects of business, but how do we best ensure that the regulators are really acting in the public interest?

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This is a complex issue and reasonable people may come up with very different answers to this question. That said, your assignment to write a short essay (minimum 400 words) on the extent to which you believe that Ariely’s arguments are relevant for government regulation of business.

2. Our discussion and review for the last part of the course focuses on the implications and effects of the coronavirus pandemic for business and society. We are all experiencing some of the effects of this ongoing crisis. A large number of businesses have closed, unemployment claims have risen to an all-time high, the US stock markets have tumbled in a manner not seen since the great depression, and all this is happening just a few months after we saw the economy achieve a series of all-time low unemployment records for different groups along with all-time high stock market averages.

Nassim Taleb used the term Black Swan Event (Links to an external site.) to describe unexpected events that fundamentally change our outlook and how we proceed after that event. The coronavirus pandemic is such an event. Of course, the economy will eventually recover and, once it does, we are likely to see both structural and operational changes in industries, in businesses and in jobs. For example, we might see an even greater increase in the use of robotics and automation that might help keep plants open during future events. We will also probably see an acceleration in certain online trends based on labor issues and distancing, etc. Businesses that are affected by supply chain issues may react to reduce the likelihood of problems in the future, etc. These kinds of things will in turn affect capital/labor ratios, the nature of available jobs, etc. Clearly, some industries are better placed to deal with these kinds of issues than others, but all are likely to be affected in some ways.

With all these things in mind, your assignment is to select an industry that is of interest to you and then write a short 400 word essay on the changes that you believe will take place in that industry, its firms, the operating procedures of firms and possibly also in available jobs and job requirements.

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