Skip to main content
Past Event

Why Human Psychology Matters to the Global Financial Crisis

On March 2, the Brookings Institution hosted Nobel laureate and Brookings Nonresident Senior Fellow George A. Akerlof and acclaimed economist Robert J. Shiller for a discussion of their new book, Animal Spirits: How Human Psychology Drives the Economy, and Why it Matters for Global Capitalism. Akerlof and Shiller assert the necessity of an active government role in economic policymaking by recovering John Maynard Keynes’s insight about “animal spirits,” a term used to describe the gloom and despondence that led to the Great Depression and the changing psychology that accompanied recovery. Brookings Senior Fellow William Galston moderated a panel discussion with the authors, Brookings Senior Fellow Jeffrey Kling.

This event is part of the Governing Ideas series intended to broaden the discussion of governance issues through forums on timely and relevant books on history, culture, legal norms and practices, values and religion.

After the program, panelists took audience questions.



Featured Speakers

George A. Akerlof

Daniel E. Koshland, Sr. Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Economics - University of California, Berkeley


Jeffrey R. Kling

Former Brookings Expert

Associate Director for Economic Analysis - Congressional Budget Office


Irwin M. Stelzer

Senior Fellow and Director, Hudson Institute’s Center for Economic Policy

More Information

(202) 797-6105

To subscribe or manage your subscriptions to our top event topic lists, please visit our event topics page.

Get a weekly events calendar from Brookings