Nov 26, 2014
Robbie Butler is
a lecturer of economics at University College Cork in Ireland,
where he lectures on a multitude of modules, such as
Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Growth Economics and Corporate
Strategy. Robbie received his PhD from University of
Hertfordshire in England, is published in a number of
internationally renowned academic journals and is a regular
economics contributor on media. Robbie's primary passion is in
sports, namely football (soccer) and he has a Junior International
cap for Ireland. Robbie managed to bridge his passion for sports
with his career in economics and, along with his brother David and
other colleagues, created and runs the popular website
- who lectured Robbie as an
undergrad. Hint: He's the host of this show!
- how Robbie's use of sports in explaining economics grew from
fun and a personal interest into something that has grown and
evolved into something quite serious.
- how playing football at a highly competitive level has allowed
Robbie view economics in quite a unique way.
- how this unique view has given Robbie an ability to delve into
economics with many sports analogies and examples in
which students can relate.
- how having played sports competitively has given Robbie a level
of respect and credibility when using sports-related themes in
- the importance of working with like-minded people and how it
makes life so much easier.
- why a coffee break with colleagues can have the most
intellectually-stimulating conversations bursting with ideas.
- a great tip before publishing
a blog post when working with others who share the same website -
it cuts out the use of Google Docs, Dropbox, etc.
- how working with a sibling makes
the feedback on your work more critical and raw - something that
could help with perfecting the right article.
- about the Theory of Multiple Intelligence by Harvard
educationalist Howard Gardner - we have 8 ways of learning.
- how sports can be used as "a lens to the economic
world" that empowers the student when learning and
understanding economic theory.
- how a change to the rules of a football/soccer game in the
Caribbean between Barbados and Granada created incentives that
reflects the behaviour of rational economic agent.
- how watching the Simpsons can
expose us to economic theory with its many parodies.
- why Robbie believes that the
English Premier League is in trouble and has all the hallmarks of a
- how the different economic
structures of the US (free market) and Europe (socialist) are
reversed when it comes to the economic model of sports.
- how the debt/GDP ratio imposed on
EU countries is similar to the debt/income rules imposed on
- why big clubs may be willing to
break the spending rules of the game despite the imposition of
- about the use of metrics by Billy
Bean's Oakland A's and how a 'mediocre' team could beat the
cash-rich New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox.
Get the shownotes to this episode and all the links mentioned