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Surprising Science

Social Science Insights

Surprising conclusions from the social sciences: the benefits of keeping the minimum wage low, eye-witness gullibility, why pain is good and what bedroom furniture says about evolution.

“The minimum wage has been politically controversial for most of the last century, even though it affects a marginal share of the labor force and evidence of significant job loss is inconclusive. Now one economist would like us to consider another effect of the minimum wage: finishing high school. By curtailing low-wage/low-skill jobs, the minimum wage motivates young people to stay in school and become skilled. This effect then generates what the author calls an ‘educational cascade’ by setting an example for the upcoming class of students.”


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