Update (4/15/15): I’ve since heard that this idea emerged in a class at Price’s undergraduate institution, Seattle Pacific University (also where I became a Sociology major thanks to a class taught by another Price). In other words, having students consider how social science can inform their own lives and future decision-making as part of classes could have a tremendous impact on how they carry that knowledge into the world. Something academics should take seriously and cultivate.
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I have long been fascinated by quests to live out proscriptions (whether Oprah’s advice, The Bible, or the myriad other things people decide to do and blog about for a year). When I read today’s headline about the CEO who was raising his lowest paid worker’s salary to $70,000, I was anything but fascinated. But tonight, a friend’s Facebook post inspired me to actually read the article.
Dan Price, the CEO of Gravity Payments isn’t only raising his employee’s salaries, he’s also lowering his own from 1 million to just $70,000. What inspired him to pull the lowest up and his own down?
Social science, specifically the Kahneman and Deaton (2010) paper on income and well-being.
Yes, Price is concerned about inequality in general and sees it as an issue that business leaders should care about, but he got the specific number – the $70-75,000 sweet spot – from social science.
It made me think, if we were to craft a year of living based on social science, what would you do?