Background of SocioEconomics, Inc.


SocioEconomics, Inc. was founded in 1991 by Jack Lessinger, emeritus professor at the University of Washington. The company’s mission is to advance economic theory through research, testing and public discussions based on the Lessinger Theory of Socio-economics.

In mainstream economic theory, separate individuals determine supply, demand and all the rest. By contrast, in socio-economics the mindset of a unique society determines economic outcomes.

Lessinger’s socio-economic theory shows that today’s wavering economic confidence can be bolstered by hastening the transformation of our society and economy. A society too long devoted to the mindset of consumer spending (consuming ‘Little Kings’) is now increasingly succeeded by a society devoted to Responsible Capitalism. “What’s in it for Me?” is surrendering to “What’s in it for Us?” We see this transformation—which historical data indicates may well continue until around 2020—as the reason for the present ‘season of depression.’

The predictive power of our company’s utilization of the socio-economic data we have developed is due, in a sense, to its simplicity. We’d all take the bet that winter is colder than summer, right? However, the prediction that January 23 will be colder than January 30 is much more hazardous.

Similarly, socio-economic theory does not define the exact starting and ending of a prosperous or depressed economy. Rather, using U.S. Census and other data spanning from 1790 to the present, we have been able to isolate alternating 25—30 year ‘seasons of prosperity’ and ‘seasons of depression.’

Our models are highly predictive when it comes to the occurrence and timing of these ‘seasons.’ For example, all five U.S. depressions to date have occurred during our theory’s predicted seasons of depression. None have occurred during the seasons of prosperity our data predicts.

Dr. Lessinger holds a Ph.D. in Land Economics, University of California, Berkeley 1956. In 2009, at the age of 87, Jack is Chief Executive Officer of Socio-Economics, Inc. In recent years, Lessinger’s long-time friend and colleague, Ranger Kidwell-Ross, has been involved in the research. Kidwell-Ross is our company President.

Kidwell-Ross is an economist who for over a decade served as editor of a national trade publication. In 2008 he authored the award-winning book, The Rise of Biodiesel. He is also co-author, with Jack Lessinger, of the company’s latest book on socio-economics: The Great Prosperity of 2020: Fall of “What’s in it for Me?” Rise of “What’s in it for Us?”

The Great Prosperity of 2020 provides a detailed explanation of the rise-and-fall of the five U.S. socio-economies that have taken place to date. The first of these, which we call ‘Mercantile Aristocracy,’ peaked in about 1790. Today we are in the process of leaving the fourth such, the ‘Little King,’ and moving toward the rising vision we term ‘Responsible Capitalism.’

This transition from one socio-economy to the next will include, as has been the case in each prior transformation, the rise of a new preferred region in which people choose to live. Unseen by most observers, data show this change in preferences has already been a major factor contributing to the decline of house and land values throughout America’s suburban landscape.

Dr. Lessinger’s theoretical framework and prior books have long predicted the decline in suburban real estate values that has roiled the U.S. and world economies since 1997. The data offered in one of his current books, Your County—Boom or Bust? The Rise of Penturbia and The Fall of Suburbia, explains the data behind when and why the U.S. population is migrating away from suburbia to the next preferred geographical areas, which we call collectively ‘Penturbia.’ (The word ‘penta’ means ‘fifth,’ and this latest migration to a new preferred geographical region marks the fifth such population migration in United States’ history.)

In attracting growth, every county competes with every other. Here again, socio-economic theory offers practical tools. Your County—Boom or Bust?, which is updated to 2008 and is available for sale on our website, is an invaluable workbook for investors in real estate. The book details comparative growth rates of over 3,000 U.S. counties.

This demonstrates each county’s success compared to every other county in the continental United States. The data include identification of 264 previously low growth counties that in recent years have become ‘turnaround counties,’ and thus are leading regions for the rising Responsible Capitalism paradigm.

Lessinger’s research findings have been published by American Demographics, American Journal of Planning, and the Appraisal Journal. His work has also been featured in periodicals that include Mother Earth News, USA Today, The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times and many others.

Kidwell-Ross is available for all types of media interviews and as a speaker. Please send us an email or call 206-497-2200 for more information. We invite your questions and comments.