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Cambridge Author Angus Deaton Wins Nobel Prize For Economics

FLI Angus Deaton

Deaton, 69, was born in Edinburgh and educated at the same private school as former prime minister Tony Blair, Fettes College. He went to Cambridge where he gained a PhD and later taught, before moving first to the University of Bristol and then to the outskirts of New York and taking dual citizenship. He is currently the Dwight D Eisenhower professor of economics and international affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton. The economics prize was created by the Swedish central bank in Alfred Nobel’s memory in 1968. The other five awards were established by Nobel in his will in 1895.

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has awarded the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences for 2015 to Angus Deaton, “for his analysis of consumption, poverty, and welfare.”

Deaton, who is Dwight D. Eisenhower Professor of Economics and International Affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and the Economics Department at Princeton University,  and who has taught at the University of Cambridge, is co-author with John Muelbauer, of Economic and Consumer Behavior and the author of, Essays in the Theory and Measurement of Consumer Behavior, which have become classics in the field.

The work for which Deaton is now being honoured revolves around three central questions:

  1. How do consumers distribute their spending among different goods?
  2. How much of society’s income is spent and how much is saved?
  3. How do we best measure and analyze welfare and poverty?

The Academy said: “To design economic policy that promotes welfare and reduces poverty, we must first understand individual consumption choices. More than anyone else, Angus Deaton has enhanced this understanding. By linking detailed individual choices and aggregate outcomes, his research has helped transform the fields of microeconomics, macroeconomics, and development economics.”

Dr Phil Good, Economics Editor at Cambridge University Press, said: “I’m delighted for Professor Deaton, this prize is fitting tribute to an extraordinary and distinguished career. He was discussing poverty and inequality long before the financial crisis happened and he is passionate about using economics to improve people’s lives.”

Angus Deaton profile and biography

Dwight D. Eisenhower Professor of International Affairs. Professor of Economics and International Affairs, Woodrow Wilson School

“I am the Dwight D. Eisenhower Professor of Economics and International Affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and the Economics Department at Princeton University. My main current research areas are in health, wellbeing, and economic development.

I hold both American and British citizenship. In Britain I taught at Cambridge University and the University of Bristol. I am a corresponding Fellow of the British Academy, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and of the Econometric Society and, in 1978, was the first recipient of the Society’s Frisch Medal. I was President of the American Economic Association in 2009. In 2012 I was awarded the BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award. In April 2014 I was elected a member of the American Philosophical Society. I was elected a member of the National Academy of Sciences on April 28, 2015.

My current research focuses on the determinants of health in rich and poor countries, as well as on the measurement of poverty in India and around the world. I also maintain a long-standing interest in the analysis of household surveys. To view information about my research on India and world poverty, health, or household surveys, click each corresponding link.

To view my working papers and publications and my letters published every six months in the Royal Economic Society Newsletter, click each corresponding link.”

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