Monthly Archives: June 2018

Incentivizing Pre-K Online Gaming With Digital Sticker Books and Pornography (For The Adults Says Heckman, Half Joking)

This is another post with clips culled from talks given at the Center for the Economics of Human Development’s working group, Measuring and Assessing Skills: Real Time Measurement of Cognition, Personality and Behavior. It was held at the University of Chicago in February 2018. I previously shared a segment called from “Math to Marksmanship” with […]

Mr. Krasner, I have some questions about that Chan Zuckerberg arrangement.

Dear Mr. Krasner, To understand our country, you have to recognize that black people were never meant to be free. It’s a phrase I’ve heard my friend Ismael say often. The weight of it, however, hit hard last week when he and his wife approached a manager at a local theater to resolve an issue […]

A $100 Million “Secret, Bipartisan Political Plan” to Privatize the Public Sector

I travelled to Washington, DC on Thursday June 21, 2018 with fellow activist Ismael Jimenez, an acclaimed teacher of African American history at Kensington CAPA High School in Philadelphia, PA. A week earlier the search engine gods had serendipitously delivered up an Eventbrite link for the launch of the Social Impact Partnerships to Pay for Results […]

Childhood Captured: Pay for Success and Surveillance Pre-K Play Tables

James Heckman and Robert Dugger, with support from philanthropies like the Pew Charitable Trusts and venture capitalists like JB Pritzker, have carefully honed a sales pitch for investment in early childhood education. After years of practice, it is now a well-oiled machine. The Heckman Equation promises high rates of return to investors willing to swallow […]

From Math to Marksmanship: Military Ties to Gamified Assessments

This past February, economist James Heckman convened a working group of social scientists to discuss new types of assessments that are being designed to capture data about children’s social-emotional traits and predict future behaviors. The researchers spent two days in an oak-paneled room at the University of Chicago where they collaborated on the new assessments […]

Is Robert Dugger setting up Robin Hood to steal from the poor?

More on the people behind ReadyNation’s Global Business Summit on Early Childhood, November 1-2, 2018 New York City Who is Robert Dugger? Robert Dugger is the co-founder of ReadyNation and serves on the board of the Council for a Strong America. He began his career as an economist with the Board of Governor’s that oversees […]

Test Scores and Child Hunger: The Cold Calculus of Pay for Success Predators

When I give food to the poor they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a Communist. Dom Helder Camara, Brazilian Catholic archbishop and important figure in liberation theology (1909-1999) Wrench in the Gears is primarily a blog about education, and the dehumanizing influence technology wields […]

The Chicago School of Economics And George Soros: New Theories for an Impoverished World

The Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Global Working Group (HCEO), referenced in my prior post, is run by James Heckman, Stephen Durlauf, and Robert Dugger. It operates out of the Center for the Economics of Human Development (CEHD) at the University of Chicago, and its fiscal sponsor is the Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET), an […]

Heckman and Pritzker Pitch Apps as Poverty “Solutions” Yielding a 13% Return on Investment

This is the fourth in a series providing context for the Global Business Summit on Early Childhood that ReadyNation will be hosting in New York City November 1-2, 2018. The featured image is from an article pitching Waterford Upstart online preschool, piloted in Utah, a state experimenting with funding early childhood education using social impact bonds. […]

Galton and Global Education Futures Forum: Scientific Racism Looking Backwards and Forwards

Psychology, Economics and Human Capital I spent much of my weekend researching Dr. James Heckman, Nobel prize-winning professor of economics from the University of Chicago who specializes in research around investments in human capital. I plan to write a more extensive piece on him shortly. In the meantime you can check out his Little Sis map-in-progress […]