Eric Weinstein

Managing Director
Thiel Capital

Eric Weinstein is a Mathematician, Economist, and a frequent public speaker on a variety of subjects within the sciences. Currently, he is a Principal of the Natron Group in Manhattan and holds a Visiting Position at Oxford University in the Mathematical Institute. Since completing a PhD dissertation in the Mathematics Department at Harvard in 1992 he has held research positions in Mathematics, Physics, and Economics departments (at MIT, Hebrew University, and Harvard respectively).

Within Economics, Dr. Weinstein has focused on a variety of topics with an emphasis on foundations. In the early 1990s he introduced Gauge Theoretic methods into neo-classical theory with Co-author P. Malaney. More recently, he has called for an Economic Manhattan Project to return the field to sound fundamental thinking with the stated goal of making it interoperable with its related scientific sibling subjects. In 2008 he co-organized the Perimeter Institute conference on Economics to this end during the financial crisis bringing together experts from a variety of fields to focus on improving the scientific status of economic theory. In Finance, his research with A. Abdulali on valuation perversities for Mortgage Backed Securities appeared in Risk in 2002 and was among the earliest in the literature to call attention to the dangers posed by such illiquid securities. In the area of scientific innovation, Dr. Weinstein’s work has taken the form of economic history, laying much of the responsibility for the problems in attracting Americans to Scientific and Engineering careers at the doorstep of leading scientific organizations engaged in the manipulation of labor market signals to trainees and entrants.  In the related area of labor market theory, Dr.Weinstein’s 2002 paper published in the ILR called for and constructed a canonical Coasian market solution to problems of immigration.

As a public speaker, Dr. Weinstein has frequently championed scientific risk taking, the importance of self-taught scientists in their role of connecting fields, and the need to limit academic credentialism and rent-seeking behavior from hindering foundational breakthroughs in basic research.  

My Video Content

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By Marshall Auerback

The philosopher Karl Popper argued that we cannot know empirical truths with absolute certainty.

According to Popper, even scientific laws can’t be verified beyond a shadow of a doubt. They can only be falsified by testing. One failed test is enough to falsify, but no amount of conforming instances are sufficient to verify. Scientific laws are hypothetical in character and their truth remains subject to testing. Ideologies that claim to be in possession of the ultimate truth are making a false claim; therefore, they can be imposed on society only by force. 

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Welcome to our video series called "New Economic Thinking." The series will feature dozens of conversations with leading economists on the most important issues facing economics and the global economy today.

My Grants

The goal of this project is provide the mathematics for a second marginal revolution enabling the natural modeling of heterogeneous agents with unstable beliefs, fully dynamic preferences, and allowances for an increased level of self-inconsistency. The core economic toolkit is subject to a fundamental trade off. It is generally true that the weaker the mathematical tools available to economists, the stronger the assumptions that must be made about the nature of biological agents. Conversely, it is through the development of stronger mathematical tools that core assumptions may be weakened to be compatible with what is known from the biological and behavioral sciences.