The Economist’s Guide to Parenting: Economist Kids Photo Gallery

For our latest podcast, “The Economist’s Guide to Parenting” (you can download/subscribe at iTunes, get the RSS feed, listen live via the media player, or read a transcript here), we asked for parenting advice from a most unlikely group of people: economists. The roster of guests includes our very own Steve Levitt, Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers; and also features economist parents Bruce SacerdoteMelissa Kearney, Valerie Ramey, and Bryan Caplan.

As a bit of extra fun, we decided to make a photo gallery out of the cute family pictures they sent us. Take a look at these proud economist parents!

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  1. ShojoBakunyu says:

    I just listened to this episode of the podcast and have one piece of info… An experiment was done where they took two female mice and impregnated them.

    Mouse 1 was healthy, mentally and physically.
    Mouse 2 was depressed.

    When the females gave birth, the scientists swapped litters and had the genetically healthy mice raised by Depressed Mamma and Depressed Mice raised by Healthy Mamma.

    When the mice grew up, the mice raised by the depressed Mom were unhealthy, antisocial, and abnormal… Their development had been altered by mentally ill mom to the point where eve3n their coloration was altered.

    The mice raised by healthy Mom were just slightly below average.

    The epigenomic development of the mice was dramatically altered by their upbringing and environment.

    ? NOVA Science Now – Topic: The Epigenome:
    ? BBC Horizon: The Ghost in Your Genes:

    This has been shown time and again to be the case in humans, too. Unhealthy mothers produce children that are less likely to succeed at school and their “Template” for what to be was unhealthy, resulting in poor school and work performance and inability to maintain healthy intimacy.

    Genetics play a HUGE roll in how a person turns out, but part of that is their epigenomic development that is altered by environmental.

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  2. Kate says:

    The podcast mentions that people who have children are less happy than people without children. Has anyone checked whether this holds throughout life or does it just apply when they have actual children in the home? I wonder if having children means that older people have more close connections to other people and are happier as they age. Are people with grandchildren happier than people who never had children?

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  3. K Thompson says:

    Really enjoy the podcasts!

    Re: Parents being less happy… that just doesn’t ring true. Yes, I’ve seen lots of parents who are very concerned with what ever their child’s current challenge is. But try to take these children away from those same *unhappy* parents. That’s when I think you’d see real unhappiness, not just backdoor bragging at how hard it is to be a parent.

    For example: I’m told my father-in-law didn’t have any interest in his kids until they were old enough to play chess. Now that his adult children are living all over the world the one thing he wants is to be near them. The greatest joy of his life are his children, and he’s a lovely father-in-law. I cannot imagine most people being happy without their children and grandchildren.

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