Focus On...Paddy McNutt
Our first focus on a particular academic looks at Managerial Economics tutor Paddy McNutt, our Academic of the Year for 2013:
As a Visiting Fellow at Manchester Business School, I coordinate the Managerial Economics course which focuses primarily on game theory – ie how to understand non-cooperative behaviour by individuals, groups and companies. Many of you are surprised at how fascinating this branch of economics actually is and how many of the concepts and applications blend with what you apply in your everyday business experience.
My recent research work continues this theme. For example, my latest book Decoding Strategy: Patterns & Predictions is due for publication by McGraw Hill in 2014. It builds on the research premise that human behaviour is learned behaviour - the act of observing translates what is being observed into a strategic pattern, and this pattern is a valuable piece of information.
We call it a critical time line; you probably know it better as the social graph in Facebook. The discovery of patterns in individual behavior is an engaging challenge. At your MBA ME workshop, you will be presented with a problem to solve and during the workshop, we will work with you as executives to provide the conditions in which you can learn different ways of problem-solving.
I have had an interest in game theory since my graduate days at Oxford University, where students were encouraged to research new ideas. With a background in both economics and mathematics, my initial focus was on social choice theory and the theory of voting – leading to a natural progression into what today is called behavioral economics. Individuals are curious by nature - we like to observe people and not only do we like to play games but we also like to win.
Apart from teaching, I provide specialized high level strategic advice and economic analysis to clients by applying game theory reasoning to fit their business goals and challenges. I provide expert advice on market trends, FX and global analysis and enjoy speaking at international conferences and contributing to CNBC and Bloomberg. During my portfolio career, I have worked with national governments, CEOs, pricing managers, engineers, and lawyers. Experiences gained as a ‘regulator-gamekeeper turned poacher’ contributed to my book Law, Economics & Antitrust in 2005 and filtered into an MBA elective on ethics and competition policy - to be re-launched in 2015 as Ethics and Responsibility in Business.
Motto in life…
My motto in life is best captured by the lyrics of Bob Dylan’s My Back Pages : ‘I was so much older then, I am younger than that now’. Presently, I am a student of the harmonica, Mandarin and Spanish. My time is divided between lecturing, consulting, writing blogs, tweeting and researching. You can follow me @tuncnunc.