Isabella Weber Named in the 2023 TIME100 Next

Isabella Weber, was included in the 2023 TIME100 Next list of emerging leaders from around the world. Weber is known internationally for her research on systemically important prices, strategic price stabilization and what she calls “sellers’ inflation” – the ability of firms with market power to hike prices and boost profits in an emergency.  “By challenging conventional thinking, Isabella Weber is helping to redefine global economic policy,” says UMass Amherst Chancellor Javier Reyes. “I congratulate her on this impressive international honor, and I look forward to seeing where her research takes us next.”

“Weber is challenging the conventional wisdom that giant companies don’t price-gouge—and she’s been proved right,” writes Massachusetts U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren in the “TIME100 Next” article. “She correctly identified how the Fed’s extreme interest-rate hikes are ill-suited to address this profiteering, arguing it should pause its increases before throwing millions out of work. Our nation needs structural changes to promote competition and investment, and Weber’s bold ideas are helping shift the economic paradigm.”  Read more...

Professor Emerita Carol Heim wins the Jonathan Hughes Prize for Excellence in Teaching Economic History

Professor Emerita Carol Heim has received the Jonathan Hughes Prize for Excellence in Teaching Economic History at this year's Economic History Association meeting in Pittsburgh.  The annual Jonathan Hughes Prize is awarded to recognize excellence in teaching economic history. Jonathan Hughes was an outstanding scholar and a committed and influential teacher of economic history. The prize includes a $1,200 cash award. The winner is selected by the EHA Committee on Education and Teaching. The EHA recognizes excellence in research, publication, and teaching of economic history by awarding several annual and biennial prizes at the President’s Awards Banquet during the annual meetings.

New Department Chair, Patrick Mason

The Economics Department is thrilled to welcome the new Chair, Patrick Mason, Professor of Economics.  His primary areas of interest include labor, political economy, development, education, social identity, and crime. He is particularly interested in racial inequality, educational achievement, income distribution, unemployment, economics of identity (race and religion), family environment and socioeconomic wellbeing, and transitions in family structure and public policy, racial profiling, computerization and employment, and innovation and development in Caribbean economies. In addition to membership in the America Economic Association and the National Economic Association, Professor Mason is also the past Chairman of the Board of Directors, Partners for Dignity & Rights (formerly, the National Economic & Social Rights Initiative (NESRI); and, Member, Board of Directors, Fair Foods Standards Council (FFSC). Professor Mason is general editor of the International Encyclopedia of Race and Racism, 2nd Edition, Macmillan Reference USA (February 2013) and author of The economics of structural racism, Cambridge University Press (forthcoming). 

Statement on Racist Violence and Social Exclusion

Black Lives Matter. We declare and affirm this truth in the face of any verbal or material attempt to deny it. The current tragedies and structures of violence, exclusion and exploitation of Black people were made by human actors.  They date back to colonial times and slavery but persist to today. Teaching and research in the economics profession have often served to legitimize such structures portraying them as the outcome of the free and fair play of the market. The UMass Economics Department has a long tradition of research dedicated to uncovering structures of oppression, exploitation, exclusion and violence. This tradition must be rethought and adapted to place racial injustice at the center, as a dimension that should not be overlooked.

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