AGI – Difficult to ‘guess’ the name of who will be awarded by Nobel Prize in Economics 2020: traditionally, in fact, any forecast on the eve – the winner will be announced tomorrow morning – is distorted and it is not excluded that there will be some surprises for this edition as well. It is the 52nd in the history of the Nobel, and it is the ‘youngest’ among the categories having been introduced only in 1969. And if the prize in the other sectors was established by the Swedish chemist and industrialist Alfred Nobel in 1895, this one was born instead on the initiative of the Bank of Sweden which still finances it.
It is not only an important recognition from a professional point of view but also quite conspicuous from a strictly financial point of view, given that the Royal Swedish Academy awards the winner an economic bonus of 960,000 euros. However, the award went mainly (45 times) to American economists (second to the British, with 8 winners) and only once (in 1985) was awarded to an Italian, Franco Modigliani. IS only twice to a woman: it was the American economist Elinor Ostrom who was awarded in 2009, and then last year to Esther Duflo together with Abhijit Banerjee and Michael Kremer “for their experimental approach in the fight against poverty in the world”.
This year there are numerous candidates: the quotes give John List first on the list. American economist at the University of Chicago, where he serves as Kenneth C. Griffin’s Distinguished Service Professor, List has distinguished himself not only for countless experiments in the field of fundraising for charity to learn about the science of philanthropy, but also in the study of behavioral economic theories and how they apply in the real world, from price behavior to market discrimination, to the valuation of non-marketed goods and services.
Not only List, also this year British or American economists are in pole position: could a woman be awarded another time? Nothing is excluded as it has been complained from many quarters that the fair sex has never obtained such recognition. And then according to Hubert Fromlet, Swedish professor and Nobel ‘expert’, if between the eighties and nineties economic research was the exclusive prerogative of men, it would now be time for a change of scenery given the important progress achieved by the various ‘brains’ in the last decades.
However, another American this year is also among the candidates, Richard S. Grossman, professor of economics at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT and visiting scholar at the Institute of Quantitative Social Sciences at Harvard University. He is an expert on political issues in macroeconomics, banking and finance. In particular, it focuses on the links between the financial sector and aggregate economic activity and how economic and political forces shape the financial structure. Another professor, Albert “Pete” Kyle, could receive the Nobel this year: he was a professor at Princeton University (1981-1987), University of California Berkeley (1987-1992) and Duke University (1992-2006) . His research has always focused on trading, specifically market manipulation and price volatility. His attention has also focused in his studies on venture capital and private equity, as well as corporate finance, option pricing and asset pricing.