It is well-known that studying the behavior of economists can shed light on the actions of other species (namely, humans) under a limited set of conditions. However, rigorous research on the mating habits of economists has been difficult to come by, in large part due to their habit of inter-breeding with humans. This week, there has been significant progress in filling that gap in the literature.

The first piece of evidence is 14 Ways an Economist Says I Love You, complete with graphs (of course), that made its way around on Twitter the last couple of days. It is not clear from the title, but I suspect that it is 14 ways that Econs say 'I love you' to one another, not the ways that they declare how I personally feel toward you, the reader. My favorite graph is below, which game theorists will recognize as a variant of the caterpillar game with one or two important changes.

For longer-term mating behavior, we have this piece that appeared in the New York Times over the weekend on the relationship between Justin Wolfers and Betsey Stevenson. The article seems mostly plausible given what I know about Econs, but a larger and longer-term study would be needed to provide convincing evidence. I suspect that Stevenson and Wolfers would support this, given that the article says they "[b]oth hew — one might even say passionately — to the data." One part of the article that gave me trouble early on, however, was this:

Their daughter, Matilda, who is almost 2 1/2 , attends classes in art, music and soccer. She is not allowed to eat any meat or sugar, not even in birthday cake.

Everyone knows economists love cake.

For more, check out The Stand-Up Economist, whose most popular video is shown below. He is also the author of The Cartoon Introduction to Economics, a lovely gift from my own Valentine this year.