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Jakarta Post

2009 Nobel Economics Prize: What does it mean?

  • Ari A. Perdana

Melbourne   /   Mon, October 19 2009   /  10:37 am

I never bet on who will win the Nobel Prize in Economics in any given year. There is no way to predict it. This year’s co-winner, Oliver Williamson, had an odd of 50/1 according to Ladbroke, a UK-based betting house. The other co-winner, Elinor Ostrom was not even in the betting market as she is a political scientist by profession. If someone placed a bet on them, he or she would be a rich man by now.I guess no one has ever made a fortune from betting on it. Cornell’s Kaushik Basu once said that he was tipping his mentor Amartya Sen to win the prize for five years in a row. When Sen did win it in 1998, he had given up betting. In the 1990s, almost everyone predicted that Paul Krugman would win the prize, but just when everybody stopped thinking Krugman would ever win at all, the committee awarded him the prize in 2008.The common theme of Ostrom and Williamson’s work is economic gov...