Nobel Prize winner on campus Nov. 7October 5, 2012
Nobel Prize-winning economist Gary Becker will speak at Cornell College on Wednesday, Nov. 7 at 7 p.m. in Kimmel Theatre. His talk is titled “The Worldwide Boom in Higher Education and Why the United States is Falling Behind.”
Becker, who won the Nobel Memorial Prize for Economic Science in 1992, the National Medal of Science in 2000 and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2007, among others, is the author of 10 books and more than 100 professional articles. He is an expert in human capital, economic incentives, economics of the family, and economic analysis of crime, discrimination and population. His talk is co-sponsored by the Berry Center for Economics, Business, and Public Policy and the Roe Howard Freedom Lecture.
Becker has a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Chicago, where he has taught since 1969. He was influenced by economist Milton Friedman, who taught Becker in 1951 at the University of Chicago. In the autobiography posted on the Nobel Prize website, Becker wrote that Friedman taught him that, “economic theory was not a game played by clever academicians, but was a powerful tool to analyze the real world. His course was filled with insights both into the structure of economic theory and its application to practical and significant questions.”
In his research Becker acquired a reputation for applying methods of economic analysis to areas once considered outside the scope of economics. This included the economics of marriage, the demand for children, and studies of crime and punishment.
The Berry Center provides academic enrichment programs for undergraduates in applied economics and public policy and supports internships, visiting speakers, undergraduate research, student conference participation, reading groups and off-campus study.
This is the sixth in the Roe Howard Freedom Lecture Series. Previous speakers include David Weddle, Amity Shlaes, Mark Steyn, Dinesh D’Souza and Richard Thaler. The lecture series is funded through the generosity of the Riesen Foundation and Cornell trustee and alumnus Dean Riesen ’79 and alumna Barbara Hull Riesen ’82.
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