“I would like to discuss the state of the world” or “I would like to be able to not only follow current events, but also be able to determine what is right and what is wrong on my own.” If this describes you, then I would like to present to you a book that can refine the “art of understanding society.”
It may not be apparent if you are not paying attention, but modern society operates through very odd mechanisms. Everything has a strange number called a “price” attached to it. Everyone does what they like, and even though there is no “central authority” steering the wheel so that the economy runs smoothly, society functions well as it is. Understanding the underlying mechanisms is the key to understanding how society works.
After years of debates and thought, the study of economics can now clearly grasp these mechanisms. In order to learn and acquire this knowledge, it is important to actually try to solve problems. This book is a collection of practice problems based on my textbook, “The Power of Microeconomics.” It covers practice problems in detail that will help you develop a basic economic way of thinking. Furthermore, to set the book apart from “a book with practice problems that involve numerous meaningless calculations as preparation for various exams,” I compiled many practice problems so that you can realize that, “I see. So this is what I can understand using the sharp tool that is economics!” For example, what do you think about the following opinions?
 Releasing all existing music and videos already created to the public free of charge will benefit the world.
 The annual income of a graduate from the University of Tokyo is high because the education received up to that point improved the quality of the graduates.
While reading the book, you will find that there is a surprising “correct answer.” Regarding , it may seem false, no matter how you think about it, but it is actually a valid argument. Regarding , the salary of graduates from the University of Tokyo may increase, even if the education there was worthless and useless.
I hope those of you who find it interesting will vigorously solve the practice problems and learn the “art of understanding society!”
(Written by KANDORI Michihiro, University Professor, Graduate School of Economics / 2019)