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Eric Maskin
05N3441 emaskin.jpg
Birth December 12, 1950 (1950-12-12) (age 59)
New York City, New York USA
Nationality  United States
Institution Institute for Advanced Study
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Harvard University
Princeton University
University of Cambridge
Field Game theory
Alma mater Harvard University
Influenced Mathias Dewatripont
Contributions Mechanism design
Awards Nobel Memorial Prize (2007)
Information at IDEAS/RePEc

Eric Stark Maskin (born December 12, 1950) is an American economist and Nobel laureate recognized with Leonid Hurwicz and Roger Myerson "for having laid the foundations of mechanism design theory."[1] He is the Albert O. Hirschman Professor of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study, and a visiting lecturer with the rank of Professor at Princeton University.[2]

Contents

Biography

Maskin was born in New York City, New York on December 12, 1950, to a non-religious Jewish family, and grew up in Alpine, New Jersey.[3] He graduated from Tenafly High School in Tenafly, New Jersey in 1968[4], and attended Harvard University where he received his A.B. in Mathematics and Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics. After he earned his doctorate, Maskin went to the University of Cambridge in 1976 where he was a research fellow at Jesus College, Cambridge. He taught at Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 1977-1984 and from 1985-2000 at Harvard University, where he was the Louis Berkman Professor of Economics. In 2000, he moved to the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey.

Maskin has worked in diverse areas of economic theory, such as game theory, the economics of incentives, and contract theory. He is particularly well known for his papers on mechanism design/implementation theory and dynamic games. His current research projects include comparing different electoral rules, examining the causes of inequality and studying coalition formation. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Econometric Society, and the European Economic Association, and a Corresponding Fellow of the British Academy. He was president of the Econometric Society in 2003.

Software patents

Maskin suggested that software patents inhibit innovation rather than stimulate progress. Software, semiconductor, and computer industries have been innovative despite historically weak patent protection, he argued. Innovation in those industries has been sequential and complementary, so competition can increase firms' future profits. In such a dynamic industry, "patent protection may reduce overall innovation and social welfare." A natural experiment occurred in the 1980s when patent protection was extended to software," wrote Maskin. "Standard arguments would predict that R&D intensity and productivity should have increased among patenting firms. Consistent with our model, however, these increases did not occur." Other evidence supporting this model includes a distinctive pattern of cross-licensing and a positive relationship between rates of innovation and firm entry.[5]

References

  1. ^ Nobel Foundation (October 15, 2007). "The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel 2007". Press release. http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/economics/laureates/2007/press.html. Retrieved 2008-08-15.  
  2. ^ Economics professor wins Nobel - The Daily Princetonian
  3. ^ Silverstein, Marilyn. "Nobel winner who's at home with Einstein", New Jersey Jewish News, November 8, 2007. Accessed January 22, 2008. "A native of New York, Maskin grew up in New Jersey, in a nonreligious Jewish home in the town of Alpine."
  4. ^ Minutes of Library Board Meeting, Tenafly Public Library, dated October 15, 2007. Accessed January 22, 2008.
  5. ^ Sequential Innovation, Patents, and Imitation, by James Bessen and Eric Maskin, Discussion paper, MIT (2000), forthcoming in The RAND Journal of Economics

External links

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Simple English

Eric Maskin
File:Eric Maskin at
BornDecember 12, 1950
New York City, New York
ResidenceUSA
NationalityAmerican
FieldEconomist
InstitutionsInstitute for Advanced Study
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Harvard University
Princeton University
Alma materHarvard University
Known forGame theory, mechanism design
Notable prizesNobel Memorial Prize (2007)

Eric Stark Maskin (born December 12, 1950) is an American economist who won a Nobel prize with Leonid Hurwicz and Roger Myerson, for economics in 2007. He is the Albert O. Hirschman Professor of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study, and a visiting Professor at Princeton University.[1]

Contents

Life story

Maskin was born in New York City, New York on December 12, 1950, to a non-religious Jewish family, and grew up in Alpine, New Jersey.[2] He graduated from Tenafly High School in Tenafly, New Jersey in 1968[3], and then studied at Harvard University where he received his A.B. and Ph.D. After he got his Ph.D., Maskin went to the University of Cambridge in 1976 where he was a research fellow at Cambridge College. He taught at Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 1977-1984 and from 1985-2000 at Harvard, where he was the Louis Berkman Professor of Economics. In 2000, he moved to the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey.

He has studied a wide range of subjects in economic theory, such as game theory, the economics of incentives, and contract theory. He is particularly well known for his work on mechanism design/implementation theory and dynamic games. His current research projects include comparing different rules for elections, the causes of inequality and studying coalition formation. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Econometric Society, and the European Economic Association, and a Corresponding Fellow of the British Academy. He was president of the Econometric Society in 2003.

Software patents

Maskin suggested that software patents make new inventions difficult. Software, semiconductor, and computer industries have made many inventions in the past when patent laws have been weak, he argued. "In the 1980s when patent protection was extended to software," wrote Maskin. "Arguments predicted that productivity should have increased among patenting firms." Maskins ideas that this would not happen were correct. "These increases did not occur." [4]

References

  1. Economics professor wins Nobel - The Daily Princetonian
  2. Silverstein, Marilyn. "Nobel winner who's at home with Einstein", New Jersey Jewish News, November 8, 2007. Accessed January 22, 2008. "A native of New York, Maskin grew up in New Jersey, in a nonreligious Jewish home in the town of Alpine."
  3. Minutes of Library Board Meeting, Tenafly Public Library, dated October 15, 2007. Accessed January 22, 2008.
  4. Sequential Innovation, Patents, and Imitation, by James Bessen and Eric Maskin, Discussion paper, MIT (2000), forthcoming in The RAND Journal of Economics

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