NBER Celebrates 90 Years

January 2010 marked the ninetieth anniversary of the founding of the NBER. On December 29, 1919, six economists -- T.S. Adams (Yale University), John R. Commons (University of Wisconsin), Wesley Clair Mitchell (Columbia University), Malcolm Rorty (AT&T), Nachum Stone, and Allyn Young (Cornell University) -- met at the LaSalle Hotel in Chicago during the annual meeting of the American Economics Association to draft the bylaws of a new organization that would conduct timely research on important economic issues. Several weeks later, on January 23, 1920, that new organization -- the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) -- was chartered as a nonprofit corporation doing business in New York. Edwin Gay, who was NBER's first president, was also the first Dean of the Harvard Business School. Wesley Clair Mitchell was the NBER's first Director of Research.

The NBER's charter set a lofty goal for the organization: "to encourage, in the broadest and most liberal manner, investigation, research and discovery, and the application of knowledge to the well-being of mankind." A later section of the charter provided a bit more specific guidance: "to conduct, or assist in the making of, exact and impartial investigations in the fields of economic, social, and industrial science." The NBER remains dedicated to this important objective.

The Cambridge staff celebrated this NBER milestone with a cake decorated to commemorate the historical chronology of NBER business cycle dates.

2009 Awards and Honors

A number of NBER researchers received honors, awards, and other forms of professional recognition during 2009 and early 2010. A list of these honors, excluding those that were bestowed by the researcher's home university and listing researchers in alphabetical order, is presented below.

Viral Acharya won the Viz Risk Management Prize on Energy Markets, Securities, and Prices at the European Finance Association meetings for “Limits to Arbitrage and Hedging: Evidence from Commodity Markets,” which was co-authored by Lars Lochstoer and Tarun Ramadorai. He also received the III Jaime Fernandez de Araoz Corporate Finance Best Paper Award for “The Internal Governance of Firms,” which was co-authored by Stewart Myers and Raghuram G. Rajan, and a Distinguished Referee Award from the Review of Financial Studies.
Douglas Almond won a 5-year NSF CAREER Award for “Health Determinants and Research Design.” The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is an NSF-wide activity that supports the early career-development activities of those teacher-scholars who most effectively integrate research and education within the context of the mission of their organization.
Lee J. Alston was a Rockefeller Fellow at the Bellagio Study and Conference Center in 2009-2010 and a Visiting Research Fellow at the Australian National University in 2009.
Pol Antras won the Fundación Banco Herrero Prize, awarded annually to a Spanish social scientist under age 40.
Anirban Basu received the Bernie O’Brien New Investigator Award from the International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research; was Labelle Lecturer in Health Services Research at McMaster University; and won the Society for Medical Decision Making Comparative Effectiveness Research Essay Contest.
Marco Battaglini was awarded the Carlo Alberto Medal, presented to an Italian economist under the age of 40 for his/her outstanding research contributions to the field of economics. He also received the Michael Wallerstein Award from the American Political Science Association for best article published in 2008 in the area of political economy (jointly awarded with Stephen Coate).
Roland Benabou delivered the Francois-Albert Angers Lecture at the Annual Congress of the Societe Canadienne de Sciences Economiques, in Saint-Adele, Canada in May 2009 and the 7th Toulouse Lectures at the Toulouse School of Economics, France, in December 2009.
Efraim Benmelech received an NSF CAREER Award for "The Causes and Consequences of Financial Distress."
David G. Blanchflower was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Science (DSc) from Queen Mary, University of London, his undergraduate alma mater.
Markus K. Brunnermeier received the German Bernacer Prize, given annually to European economists under the age of 40 who have made outstanding contributions in the fields of macroeconomics and finance.
John Y. Campbell was awarded Doctor honoris causa degrees from the University of Maastricht and the University of Paris-Dauphine and became a Corresponding Fellow of the British Academy.
Bruce Carlin won the 2009 Swiss Finance Institute Award for the best paper of the year for his paper with Gustavo Manso entitled "Obfuscation, Learning, and the Evolution of Investor Sophistication."
Anne Case became a Fellow of the Econometric Society in 2009.
John H. Cochrane was elected president of the American Finance Association.
Lauren Cohen won an NSF CAREER Grant for her work on relationships in finance.
Courtney Coile joined the Board of Editors of the Journal of Pension Economics and Finance.
Janet Currie was elected Vice-President of the American Economic Association for 2010.
Angus S. Deaton received the John Kenneth Galbraith Award from the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association Foundation and became an honorary fellow of Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge. He was also president of the American Economic Association in 2009.
Stefano DellaVigna became co-editor of the Journal of the European Economic Association (JEEA) in June 2009.
Erwin Diewert was elected a Distinguished Fellow of the American Economic Society.
John J. Donohue was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2009.
Susan Dynarski received the Robert P. Huff Golden Quill Award from the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators for her contributions to the literature on student financial aid.
Ronald G. Ehrenberg was nominated by New York Governor David Paterson in May 2009 for a term on the SUNY (State University of New York) Board of Trustees.
Barry Eichengreen received the 2009 Schumpeter Prize of the International Schumpeter Society. Previous winners include Romano Prodi and Vaclav Klaus.
Hanming Fang and Dan Silverman won the International Health Economics Association’s 17th Kenneth Arrow Award for the Best Paper in Health Economics published in 2008 for their paper, "Sources of Advantageous Selection: Evidence from the Medigap Insurance Market." This paper, which was written with Michael Keane, was published in the Journal of Political Economy in April 2008.
Henry Farber was selected as a Fellow of the Labor and Employment Relations Association for 2010 for his lifetime contributions to research on the employment relationship. Only three academics are elected each year across all disciplines.
Niall Ferguson's documentary series "The Ascent of Money" (PBS) was awarded the International Emmy for Best Documentary.
Amy Finkelstein was elected to the Institute of Medicine.
Kristin J. Forbes has been selected as a member of the Council of Economic Advisers for the state of Massachusetts, a member of the Congressional Budget Office's Panel of Economic Advisers, and a lifetime member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Nicola Fuchs-Schendeln received the SOEP-Prize for Best Scientific Publication based on the German Socio-Economic Panel, which is awarded by the German Institute for Economic Research.

Don Fullerton addressed the 27 Finance Ministers of the European Union about a possible EU carbon tax at their informal "Ecofin" meeting in Gothenberg, Sweden. He was also Keynote Speaker at larger conference of 500 policymakers from those 27 countries in Brussels, Belgium.
Xavier Gabaix won the "best paper award" from the Financial Research Association for "Dynamic Incentive Accounts" (with A. Edmans, T. Sadzik, and Y. Sannikov.)
Alan Garber received the Rock Carling Fellowship from Nuffield Trust (U.K.) and a Career Achievement Award form the Society for Medical Decision Making.
Matthew Gentzkow is a 2009 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow.
Robert Gibbons became a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Linda S. Goldberg has been appointed a member of the board of the Committee on the Status of Women in the Economics Profession, part of the American Economic Association, beginning January 1, 2010.
Claudia Goldin won the John R. Commons Award from the Omicron Delta Epsilon International Honor Society for Economics, a biennial award for career accomplishments. She also received the Mincer Prize from the Society of Labor Economists (SOLE) for career achievement in the field of Labor Economics.
Gene M. Grossman was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Economics from University of St. Gallen, Switzerland.
Michael Grossman is President of the American Society of Health Economists.
Sanford J. Grossman received the 2009 CME Group-MSRI Prize in Innovative Quantitative Applications for "Innovative Approaches to Asset Pricing Models."
Jonathan Guryan received the John T. Dunlop Award for Outstanding Research of National Significance on Labor Issues from the Labor and Employment Relations Association. The award is given to a labor economist within ten years of his/her terminal degree. He was honored for his work on discrimination by race and gender.
Robert E. Hall was President-Elect of the American Economic Association in 2009. Oliver Hart was awarded honorary doctorates from Copenhagen Business School and the University of Paris-Dauphine.
Michael C. Jensen received the Morgan Stanley and American Finance Association 2009 Award for Excellence in Financial Economics.
Marcin Kacperczyk received the Q-Group (The Institute for Quantitative Research in Finance) Research Award.
Edward J. Kane won the Warren Samuels Prize for the best paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association for Social Economics.
Lawrence F. Katz received the 2009 Susan C. Eaton Outstanding Scholar-Practitioner Award from the Labor and Employment Relations Association in recognition of outstanding research, teaching, and practice on labor and employment issues. Also, he and co-author Claudia Goldin won two major awards for their book The Race between Education and Technology: the 2009 Richard A. Lester Award for the Outstanding Book in Industrial Relations and Labor Economics and the R.R. Hawkins Award of the American Association of Publishers for the most Outstanding Professional, Reference, or Scholarly Work of 2008.
Ryan Kellogg and co-author Hendrik Wolff received the 2009 Ralph C. d'Arge and Allen V. Kneese Award for Outstanding Publication in the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management for "Daylight Time and Energy: Evidence from an Australian Experiment."
William Kerr was awarded the Kauffman Foundation Junior Faculty Fellowship in Entrepreneurship Research.
Charles D. Kolstad was elected a fellow of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists.
Amanda Kowalski received the 2009 Zellner Thesis Award in Business and Economic Statistics.
Elisabeth Kremp received the honor of Chevalier de l'Ordre National du Mérite. Jean Paul Betbeze presented the award at a ceremony held at the Bank of France.
Darius Lakdawalla and his co-authors Dana Goldman, Pierre-Carl Michaud, Neeraj Sood, Robert Lempert, Ze Cong, Han de Vries, and Italo Gutierrez received The Garfield Economic Impact Award for "U.S. Pharmaceutical Policy in a Global Marketplace" published earlier this year in Health Affairs.
Naomi R. Lamoreaux is president of the Economic History Association. She was also awarded the Clio "Can" for Exceptional Support to the Field of Cliometrics.
David S. Lee won the 2009 D. J. Aigner award for "Randomized Experiments from Non-random Selection in U.S. House Elections.” This honor is given to the most significant applied paper published in the Journal of Econometrics in 2007 and 2008.
Steven Lehrer received the second Victor R. Fuchs Research Award for the best research paper with the potential to spawn new research in an underdeveloped area of health economics or health policy.
Josh Lerner won Second Prize in the Fama/DFA Prizes for Capital Markets and Asset Pricing from the Journal of Financial Economics. He also received an Honorary Doctorate from the Technical University of Munich.
Annamaria Lusardi, Olivia S Mitchell, and Arie Kapteyn received a $3.1 million grant from the Social Security Administration to create a Financial Literacy Center (FLC), which officially began operations on October 1, 2009.
Charles F. Manski was elected a member of the National Academy of Sciences.
Sara Markowitz and Erdal Tekin were first runners-up for the Georgescu-Roegen Prize, awarded each year by the Southern Economic Association for the best academic article published in the Southern Economic Journal. Their winning article was “The Relationship between Suicidal Behavior and Productive Activities of Young Adults.”
Alexandre Mas is a Sloan Research Fellow. He also received the IZA (The Institute for the Study of Labor) Young Labor Economist Award.

Kevin Milligan and his co-authors Jon Gruber and Michael Baker won the Doug Purvis Memorial Prize, an "annual prize for a highly significant, written contribution to some issue related to Canadian economic policy in the previous year" for their paper, "Universal Child Care, Maternal Labor Supply, and Family Well Being." It was published in the Journal of Political Economy in 2008.
Jeffrey A Miron received the Alfred R. Lindesmith for Achievement in the Field of Scholarship from the Drug Policy Alliance.
Kris James Mitchener is a National Fellow of the Hoover Institution in 2009-10.
Naci Mocan received the "2008 Best Article Award" from Economic Inquiry for "What Determines Corruption? International Evidence from Micro Data."
Robert Moffitt received a Guggenheim Fellowship for the academic year 2009-10 to study "The Growth of Volatility in the U.S. Labor Market."
Dale T. Mortensen became a Distinguished Fellow of the American Economic Association in January 2009.
David Neumark and William Wascher were co-authors of Minimum Wages (MIT Press), which was recognized as an Outstanding Academic title in 2009 by Choice (one of 26 titles in economics).
Joseph P. Newhouse received the 2009 Adam Yarmolinsky Medal. The Medal is awarded to a member of the Institute of Medicine from a discipline outside of the health and medical sciences, recognizing distinguished service over a significant period of time.
Nathan Nunn was selected a 2009-10 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow.
Kevin H. O'Rourke was elected to Membership of the Royal Irish Academy. He also was awarded a European Research Council Advanced Investigator Grant.
Paul Oyer won the Brattle Distinguished Paper Prize for the outstanding paper on Corporate Finance in the Journal of Finance.
Thomas Philippon won the Prize for Best Young French Economist (Cercle des économistes/ Le Monde) in 2009.
James M. Poterba served as Vice-President of the American Economic Association and as President of the National Tax Association in 2009.
Manju Puri won a Best Paper Award (2nd prize) at the Business Models in Business Conference, Bocconi University, Milan, Italy, for "The Impact of the U.S. Financial Crisis on Global Retail Lending," co-authored by Jorg Rocholl and Sascha Steffen.
James E. Rauch will present the Nottingham Lectures in International Economics this year.
Harvey S. Rosen received the H.S. Warwick Research Award in Alumni Relations for Educational Advancement.
Andrew Samwick was selected as the New Hampshire Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE). The U.S. Professors of the Year program salutes the most outstanding undergraduate instructors in the country—those who excel in teaching and positively influence the lives and careers of students.
Antoinette Schoar won the Ewing Marion Kauffman Prize Medal for Distinguished Research in Entrepreneurship. The Kauffman Foundation established this prize for in 2005 to inspire promising young scholars to contribute new insight into the field of entrepreneurship. The Medal is awarded every two years to one scholar under age 40.
G. William Schwert was elected a Fellow of the Financial Management Association in October 2009.
Robert Shiller won the third Deutsche Bank Prize in Financial Economics, awarded every other year. He also received the Paul A. Samuelson TIAA-CREF Award for his book Animal Spirits (with George Akerlof), awarded at the ASSA Meetings in January 2010.
Pablo T. Spiller became editor-in-chief of the Journal of Law Economics and Organization and President of the International Society of New Institutional Economics.
Robert N. Stavins was inducted as a Fellow of the Association of Environmental Economists in January 2010 at the ASSA meetings in Atlanta.
Richard H. Steckel was President of the Economic History Association in 2008-9.
Per Stromberg and Michael Weisbach won the Brattle Group First Prize for best corporate finance paper published in the Journal of Finance for "Why Are Buyouts Levered? The Financial Structure of Private Equity Funds" joint with Ulf Axelson.
Richard Sylla was re-elected vice chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Museum of American Finance in New York City. He was also appointed to the National Advisory Committee of the Hamilton Partnership for Paterson, a non-profit organization that will help launch the new Paterson (NJ) Great Falls National Historical Park.
Alan M. Taylor was appointed to a Houblon-Norman/George Fellowship at The Bank of England.
Michele Tertilt was selected as a 2009 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow.
Sheridan Titman was elected Vice President of the American Finance Association. John VanReenen was the winner of the 2009 Yrjö Jahnsson Award from the European Economics Association for best economist under the age of 45 "who has made a contribution that is significant to economics in Europe." It is the most prestigious award in European economics, the European equivalent to the John Bates Clark Medal.
Laura Veldkamp, Marcin Kacperczyk,and Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh were awarded a $10,000 research grant from the Q-group for work on "Attention Allocation over the Business Cycle."
Michelle White was President of the American Law and Economics Association in 2009.
Lu Zhang received an Inaugural Distinguished Referee Award from Review of Financial Studies for 2009.
Luigi Zingales, Luigi Guiso, and Paola Sapienza won the Smith Breeden distinguished paper award of the American Finance Association for their article, "Trusting the Stock Market."

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