George Mason University economist Russell Roberts has authored a series of essays entitled “Ten Key Ideas: Opening the Door to the Economic Way of Thinking” that are well worth reading. The 10 key ideas include the following: 1. Incentives Matter, 2. Understanding Costs, 3.How Markets Work, 4. How Prices Emerge, 5. Comparative Advantage, 6. The Division of Labor, 7. The Extended Order of Cooperation, 8. Externalities, 9. How Politicians Behave, and 10. What Politicians Can and Cannot Do.
There are also a number of popular books on the “Economic Way of Thinking” that I can recommend. For starters, there’s Roberts’ own book, entitled “The Price of Everything: A Parable of Possibility and Prosperity” (also consider listening to the hourlong Roberts on the Price of Everything podcast for some background and context for the book). The best selling book entitled “Freakonomics” by Levitt and Dubner is definitely worth considering. “Naked Economics: Undressing the Dismal Science by Charles Wheelan, “The Undercover Economist by Tim Harford, and “Armchair Economist: Economics & Everyday Life” by Steven Landsburg are also good reads!