Paul Krugman wins Nobel Prize for economics

An interesting morning

The good Krugman

Bill Watson in the National Post
Despite his political views, free-market economists find it hard to quarrel with a Nobel for Paul Krugman
You don’t get the Nobel Prize in Economics for writing newspaper columns (as I’ve been trying to explain to my mother the last couple of days). So the prize awarded Monday to Paul Krugman, professor of economics at Princeton and well-known Bush-baiting op-ed columnist for The New York Times, should not be read as an endorsement of Krugman’s uber-Democratic newspapering (which the Nobel backgrounder coyly referred to as “spirited”).
US economist Paul Krugman wins Nobel Economics Prize
(AFP) A number of experts had predicted that the worldwide crisis would, in the future at least, prompt the Nobel committee to shift its focus further away from the heavily prized liberal market theories widely blamed for the mess.
And by awarding Krugman, a critic of unfettered free-market policies who has focused heavily on globalisation and the developing world, the jury has indeed decided to confront major, civilisation-changing issues.
In his New York Times columns, Krugman has stood out as a harsh critic of the Bush administration’s free-market policies.
Krugman’s “theory clarifies why worldwide trade is in fact dominated by countries which not only have similar conditions, but also trade in similar products,” the Nobel jury wrote.
His theory helps to explain that globalisation tends towards concentration, both in terms of what a manufacturing base makes, and where it is located.
The Nobel committee has thus focused on an area of economic theory with deep and wide implications for the understanding of how globalisation affects industries, populations, regions and the structure of trade, particularly in developing countries.
The issue of ever greater concentration in cities is a major policy issue everywhere but particularly in developing countries where cities tend to lack adequate infrastructure, and migration to suburbs adds acutely to urban environmental pollution.
Krugman wins Nobel prize for economics
By Tim Harford
(FT) The Nobel economics prize was awarded on Monday to Paul Krugman, one of the great popularisers of economic ideas and a trenchant critic of the Bush administration. However, the prize was awarded for work done almost three decades ago in developing what is known as “new trade theory” and “new economic geography”.
Mr Krugman, a professor at Princeton University and a prominent columnist for the New York Times, has long been seen as a future Nobel laureate. He won the John Bates Clark medal for young economists in 1991.
Yet if the choice is not surprising, the timing – just before the US presidential election – might be. Mr Krugman is an influential and partisan political commentator. His columns, first in Slate magazine and then the New York Times, were at first clever refutations of popular misconceptions about trade protection or the “new economy”, but they have become far more notable for their stinging attacks on the Bush administration. He has recently criticised Hank Paulson, the US Treasury secretary, for mishandling the credit crisis, while praising the British government for being “willing to think clearly about the financial crisis, and act quickly on its conclusions”. He also warned of the US housing bubble in 2005.
This is not the first time that the Nobel prize committee has recognised an economist with a public profile and an appetite for political debate. Joseph Stiglitz shared the prize in 2001, after a combative stint as chief economist of the World Bank; Milton Friedman was an early laureate in 1976.
Among professional economists, Mr Krugman is admired for his work on currency crises as well as the work on trade that won the prize. Avinash Dixit, a Princeton colleague, once described Krugman’s methods: “He spots an important economic issue months or years before anyone else. Then he constructs a model of it, which offers new and unexpected insight. Soon the issue reaches general attention, and Krugman’s model is waiting for other economists to catch up.”
Krugman Wins Economics Nobel
(NYT) Paul Krugman, a professor at Princeton University and an Op-Ed page columnist for The New York Times, was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences on Monday.
He has developed models that explain observed patterns of trade between countries, as well as what goods are produced where and why. Traditional trade theory assumes that countries are different and will exchange different kinds of goods; Mr. Krugman’s theories have explained why worldwide trade is dominated by a few countries that are similar to each other, and why some countries might import the same kinds of goods that it exports.
STOCKHOLM, Sweden (AP) — American Paul Krugman won the Nobel economics prize on Monday for his analysis of trade patterns and location of economic activity.
Krugman, born in 1953, and a professor at Princeton University in New Jersey and a columnist for The New York Times, formulated a new theory to answer questions about free trade, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said.
“What are the effects of free trade and globalization? What are the driving forces behind worldwide urbanization? Paul Krugman has formulated a new theory to answer these questions,” the academy said in its citation.
“He has thereby integrated the previously disparate research fields of international trade and economic geography,” it said.
Krugman was the lone of winner of the 10 million kronor (US$1.4 million) award, the latest in a string of American researchers to be
The award, known as the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, is the last of the six Nobel prizes announced this year and is not one of the original Nobels. It was created in 1968 by the Swedish central bank in Nobel’s memory.
Bush critic Krugman wins 2008 Nobel for economics
STOCKHOLM (Reuters) – U.S. economist Paul Krugman, a fierce critic of the Bush administration for policies that he argues led to the current financial crisis, won the 2008 Nobel prize for economics on Monday.
The Nobel committee said the award was for Krugman’s work that helps explain why some countries dominate international trade, starting with research published nearly 30 years ago.

One friend  sent us a selection of his favorite Krugman columns (we all have our own list), but we particularly enjoyed his choice of columns related to the environment:
(April 2006) on Exxon Mobil titled “Enemy of the Planet
(1997) Why economists are often environmentalists, Earth in the balance
(April 2008) How overpopulation and profligate consumption threaten the planet Running out of planet to exploit, and the recent (August 2008) Can this planet be saved?

One Comment on "Paul Krugman wins Nobel Prize for economics"

  1. John Di Gasbarro November 23, 2008 at 4:40 pm ·

    Dear Paul:

    I have read many of your books. Your are indeed an intelligent man.
    Di Gasbarro

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