2017 Nobel Prize lecture considered Hart and Holmstrom's contributions to contract theory

In this year's Nobel Prize in Economics lecture, Professors Fahad Khalil and Jacques Lawarree considered the work of 2016 Nobel Prize in Economics Laureates Oliver Hart (Harvard) and Bengt Holmstrom (MIT), who were awarded "for their contributions to contract theory" and whose research sheds light on how contracts help people deal with conflicting interests.

 About the Laureates

Oliver Hart is currently the Andrew E. Furer Professor of Economics at Harvard University, where he has taught since 1993. Hart works mainly on contract theory, the theory of the firm, corporate finance, and law and economics. His research centers on the roles that ownership structure and contractual arrangements play in the governance and boundaries of corporations. He has published a book (Firms, Contracts, and Financial Structure, Oxford University Press, 1995) and numerous journal articles. 


Bengt Robert Holmström is the Paul A. Samuelson Professor of Economics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he was head of the Economics Department from 2003-2006. He holds a joint appointment with MIT’s Sloan School of Management. Holmström is a microeconomic theorist, best known for his research on the theory of contracting and incentives especially as applied to the theory of the firm, to corporate governance and to liquidity problems in financial crises. 


About the Speakers

Castor Professor of Economics and Department Chair Fahad Khalil is a specialist in contract theory, game theory, and industrial organization. He completed his PhD in economics at Virginia Tech in 1991.

Castor Professor of Economics Jacques Lawarree's research interests include game and contract theory and industrial organization. He completed his PhD in economics at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1990. 

Further Reading

"The Long and the Short of Contracts", "The Prize in Economic Sciences 2016 - Press Release". Nobelprize.org. Nobel Media AB 2014. Web. 21 Mar 2017. 

The Prize in Economic Sciences 2016: Popular Science BackgroundNobelprize.org. Web. 21 March 2017. 

About the Nobel Lecture

Due to a generous donation from alumna Olga Yang, BA '82, there is no charge for this lecture. This lecture has historically been supported by our alumni outreach organization members, formerly known as the UWEAO (UW Economics Alumni Organization).

The 2016 Nobel Prize lecture was delivered by Associate Professor Elaina Rose about Laureate Angus Deaton. 

The 2015 Nobel Prize lecture was delivered by Professor Jacques Lawarree about Laureate Jean Tirole. 

The 2014 Nobel Prize lecture was delivered by assistant professor Mu-Jeung Yang, who presented "The Empirical Revolution in Finance: Understanding How Financial Markets Process Information, Reward Risk-taking, and Follow Fads and Fashions," exploring the work of 2013 Laureates Eugene Fama, Lars Hansen, and Robert Shiller.

The 2013 Nobel Prize lecture was delivered by assistant professor Mu-Jeung Yang, who presented "From Inception to Implementation: Market Design from Labor Markets to Kidney Exchanges," exploring the work of 2012 Laureates Alvin Roth and Lloyd Shapely.

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