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Free Market Institute to Host Nobel Laureate

Vernon Smith will lecture Tuesday at the Rawls College of Business.

Written by John Davis

Vernon Smith

Vernon Smith

As part of a free public lecture series, organizers at Texas Tech University’s Free Market Institute and the Rawls College of Business will host Nobel Laureate Vernon Smith.

Smith will discuss “Rethinking Housing Bubbles: Recessions Since 1929” during the event, which runs from 5-6:15 p.m. Tuesday (Feb. 18) in Room 105 of the Business Administration Building, located at 703 Flint Ave.

“Dr. Smith has been an innovative thinker in economics for decades,” said Benjamin Powell, director of the Free Market Institute. “Among Nobel Laureates, he is one of the most consistently pro-free market scholars and he has a new book on housing bubbles about to be released. In short, he’s a leading economic thinker and has a new book on the most significant economic event in recent U.S. history. Put these together and he’s the perfect lecturer for the Free Market Institute and the Rawls College of Business to host.”

In his lecture, Smith will discuss how housing bubbles impact bank and household balance sheets and what that implies for economic recovery. He’ll also talk about what the U.S. government has done with monetary and fiscal policy to delay rather than speed a recovery.

“Dr. Smith has always thought outside the box,” Powell said. “He is one of the creators of an entire field known as experimental economics. In his early experiments he found that many standard economic assumptions in models of ‘perfect competition’ were not needed for markets to efficiently discover the information necessary for coordination. Despite his enormous intellectual accomplishments it is hard to imagine a more humble person who remains a lifelong learner and is always interested in new ideas.”

Smith is a professor of economics at Chapman University’s Argyros School of Business and Economics and School of Law in Orange, Calif., a research scholar at George Mason University Interdisciplinary Center for Economic Science and a fellow of the Mercatus Center, both located in Arlington, Va.

In 2002, Smith shared the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences with Daniel Kahneman “for having established laboratory experiments as a tool in empirical economic analysis, especially in the study of alternative market mechanisms” in studies that integrated insights from psychological research into economic science.

The event is free and open to the public. Media can interview Smith 20 minutes prior to the event.  Parking is available in the lots around the Rawls College of Business.

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Free Market Institute

The mission of the Free Market Institute at Texas Tech is to advance the teaching of and research directly related to the virtues of free markets. The Institute promotes scholarship that crosses disciplinary boundaries, providing a forum that encourages and values discussion and rigorous debate regarding all aspects of free markets.

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