Professor Jayati Ghosh Named Member of WHO Council on Economics of Health For All

UMass Economics Professor Jayati Ghosh was named as a member of the WHO Council on Economics of Health For All.  WHO is convening 11 leading figures in economics, health and development from around the world as the first members of the WHO Council on the Economics of Health for All. The Council’s role is to provide independent advice to the Director-General on addressing interrelated health and economic challenges and mapping out a way forward that supports communities and countries to build healthy societies.  To do so, it will provide recommendations for a new approach to shape the economy that supports health for all as an overall goal, including more equitable and effective health systems. 

Economics Professor Leonce Ndikumana Named Andrew Carnegie Fellow

Distinguished Professor of Economics Léonce Ndikumana, considered by many to be one of the best-known and most widely respected African macroeconomists of his generation, has been named a 2021 Andrew Carnegie Fellow by the Carnegie Corporation of New York. Ndikumana is the first University of Massachusetts Amherst faculty member to receive the honor.
Each year, the Andrew Carnegie Fellows Program recognizes a select group of scholars and writers who receive philanthropic support for scholarship in the humanities and social sciences that addresses important and enduring issues confronting society. The fellows’ projects focus on a broad range of complex political, economic, technological, humanistic and sociological subjects. The recognition includes a $200,000 stipend, which Ndikumana will use to support his scholarship in macroeconomic and developmental impact of capital flight from African countries, an issue he has studied for most of his career.

What Drives Specialisation? A Century of Global Export Patterns

Economists frequently argue that, with regard to international trade, low-income countries will automatically specialize in producing basic commodities, while high-income countries export a mixture of technologically sophisticated and simpler products. These differences are typically explained by variations in skills, production technology, and other endowments, with little reference to historical processes. In contrast, complexity economics suggests that past productive capabilities can determine future capacities. In an innovative new study, Prof. Isabella Weber (UMass, Economics), Gregor Semieniuk (UMass Economics and PERI), Tom Westland (Cambridge University), and Junshang Liang (UMass Economics) analyze data over an entire century, across very different forms of globalization, and show that history matters: early patterns of specialization have a strong impact on what the world’s economies look like today.

Economics Major, Zac Steigmeyer '21 "From Equipment Manager to Goalie in the Frozen Four"

Class of 2021 Economics major Zac Steigmeyer made his NCAA hockey debut as the backup goalie in the Frozen Four when UMass defeated defending national champion Minnesota-Duluth 3-2 in overtime on Thursday, April 8th.  Two of the Minutemen’s goalies entered the NCAA’s COVID-19 contact tracing protocols making them unavailable for the game, UMass was left with only one available goalie on the roster. Steigmeyer, who is the UMass equipment manager was cleared by the NCAA to play and has goalie experience. He played high school hockey in Springfield and reached Massachusetts’ elite Super 8 Tournament each year. Steigmeyer told Mass Live that seeing his locker at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh, "It hit me a little bit like Wow, this is actually happening. That’ll be something I remember for the rest of my life.” He also told Mass Live “It’s very unfortunate what happened. Some of those guys are my best friends. They’ve gotten us to where we are. To see them not be on the ice for what could potentially be our last game is sad, but at the same time, we’re in this COVID world and its next man up mentality. I feel for those guys, but I feel like I have to step up into that role.” On April 10th UMass defeated St. Cloud State University to win the National Championship.

Stephen A. Resnick Graduate Student Essay Prize 2021

The Association for Economic and Social Analysis, in collaboration with Rethinking Marxism: A Journal of Economics, Culture, and Society, is proud to announce that submissions are now being accepted for the 2021 Stephen A. Resnick Graduate Student Essay Prize. 

Stephen A. Resnick (1938-2013) earned his Ph.D. in economics from MIT, taught for eight years in the Economics Department at Yale University and two years at the City College of New York, before joining the Economics Department at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1973. Resnick was an award-winning undergraduate and graduate teacher. He also pioneered, in collaboration with Richard D. Wolff, an antiessentialist approach to Marxian economic and social analysis. Of their many jointly authored works, the best known are Knowledge and Class: A Marxian Critique of Political Economy (1987), New Departures in Marxian Theory (2006), and (with Yahya Madra) Contending Economic Theories: Neoclassical, Keynesian, and Marxian (2012). Resnick was a founding member of the Association for Economic and Social Analysis and Rethinking Marxism.

The winner will receive a $2,000 award and publication of their essay in Rethinking Marxism.

To be considered for the 2021 Resnick Prize, please submit a current CV and a 4000-8000 word essay (consistent with Rethinking Marxism guidelines) to no later than June 1, 2021. The winner will announced by August 1, 2021

So You Want to Change the World? Study Economics

One of the best ways you can affect change for the better is to study economics. Panelists at the Women in Economics symposium, co-hosted by the Departments of Economics and Resource Economics, may have been only slightly biased in this opinion but their lived experience and research areas stand as testaments to their validity. 
“I care about the environment; I care about people, seeing poverty around and I don’t understand how this can be reality; and also about gender and how that plays such a huge role in the world around us,” said Onupurba Das, a PhD student in resource economics at UMass. “Imagining that I could have an impact through policy or the work that I do, I think that’s something important to me and something I want to see happen.”

Kevin F. Hallock, UMass Economics '91 Named next President of the University of Richmond

UMass-Amherst Economics 1991 graduate Kevin F. Hallock was named the next President of the University of Richmond.  A member of Phi Beta Kappa (1990), Dr. Hallock received a B.A. degree in economics, summa cum laude, from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst (1991) and an M.A. (1993) and Ph.D. (1995) from Princeton University, both in economics. He began his career as an Assistant Professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and joined the Cornell faculty in 2005. He has won multiple awards for teaching excellence and has been an invaluable mentor to hundreds of undergraduate students throughout his career, many of whom have been engaged with his research. He has also served as advisor or dissertation committee chair for 50 Ph.D. students, many of whom are now themselves distinguished and accomplished scholars at prestigious institutions, government agencies, and NGOs.

Black Lives Matter's Effect on Police Lethal Use-of-Force - Travis Campbell

By UMass Doctoral student Travis Campbell. Has Black Lives Matter influenced police lethal use-of-force? A difference-in-differences design finds census places with Black Lives Matter protests experience a 15% to 20% decrease in police homicides over the ensuing five years, around 300 fewer deaths. The gap in lethal use-of-force between places with and without protests widens over these subsequent years and is most prominent when protests are large or frequent. This result holds for alternative specifications, estimators, police homicide datasets, and population screens; however, it does not hold if lethal use-of-force is normalized by violent crime or arrests. Protests also influence local police agencies, which may explain the reduction. Agencies with local protests become more likely to obtain body-cameras, expand community policing, receive a larger operating budget, and reduce the number of property crime-related arrests, but forego some black officer employment and college education requirements.

Faculty Book Release: The Rise and Decline of Patriarchal Systems - Nancy Folbre

A major new work of feminism on the history and persistence of patriarchal hierarchies from the MacArthur Award-winning economist. In this groundbreaking new work, Nancy Folbre builds on a critique and reformulation of Marxian political economy, drawing on a larger body of scientific research, including neoclassical economics, sociology, psychology, and evolutionary biology, to answer the defining question of feminist political economy: why is gender inequality so pervasive? In part, because of the contradictory effects of capitalist development: on the one hand, rapid technological change has improved living standards and increased the scope for individual choice for women; on the other, increased inequality and the weakening of families and communities have reconfigured gender inequalities, leaving caregivers particularly vulnerable.