Sunday, October 24, 2010

West, East, And South

Peter Nobel, who is descended from Alfred Nobel, has come out against the Nobel Prize in economics. I want to focus on this part of his statement:
"With no knowledge of economics, I have no opinions about the individual economics prize winners. But something must be wrong when all economics prizes except two were given to Western economists, whose research and conclusions are based on the course of events there, and under their influence."
My question is which two prize winners does Nobel have in mind? I think Leonid Kantorovich, the Soviet co-inventer of Linear Programming, is obviously one. Is the other Amartya Sen? I think one might contrast the West with both Eastern block countries and the global South. If one counts the South as non-West, then Peter Nobel's count is not quite correct. One would also have to count Arthur Lewis, for his contributions to development economics.

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