Theory: The Rocket Equation and Beyond

  • Mark Denny
  • Alan McFadzean


The phrase “It’s not rocket science!” has become one of the great clichés of our age and yet, before the mid-twentieth century, its meaning would have been obscure to most people. In more contemporary times this phrase, delivered with suitable scorn, will be familiar to all of us who have fouled up from time to time. Always delivered with dripping sarcasm, it is applied to tasks that are regarded as simple, and so by inference rocket science is regarded as hard—intellectually or mathematically difficult. In financial circles, the theorists who earn Ph.D.s in economics and write learned papers that fail to predict the next crash are often known as “rocket scientists”, just because their work is esoteric and, perhaps, a little removed from the day-to-day world of financial management and personal investments.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark Denny
    • 1
  • Alan McFadzean
    • 2
  1. 1.VictoriaCanada
  2. 2.EdinburghUK

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