Scholarly Comments on Academic Economics

The Ideological Migration of the Economics Laureates: Introduction and Overview


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The project “The Ideological Migration of the Economics Laureates” fills the September 2013 issue of Econ Journal Watch. The project provides profiles of each of the 71 individuals who, from 1969 through 2012, won the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel. The profiles are ideological profiles: Each profile describes the ideological character and outlook of the laureate. Each profile explores change, or migration, in ideology over the course of the individual’s adult years. In this overview, I interpret ideological change in terms of classical liberalism: Did the laureate grow more classical liberal, less classical liberal, or neither? This article explains the motivation, methods, many limitations, and results. I list 21 laureates as having migrated in terms of classical liberalism, with 16 growing more classical liberal and five growing less classical liberal.

Podcast related to this article: Daniel Klein on the Ideological Migration of the Economics Laureates (EJW Audio, October 2013).