Distinguished Speaker Series

The C.V. Starr Distinguished Speaker Lectures are given once per year by leading academic experts of the economics profession. The events are plenary sessions on topics of contemporary applied interest and are open to NYU scholars in all fields of economics, political science, sociology and related areas. The lecture is followed immediately by a reception.

Upcoming Speakers

Raj Chetty Stanford University April 5, 2017

Raj Chetty

Raj Chetty

On April 5, 2017 the C.V. Starr Center will welcome Raj Chetty to give the sixth annual C.V. Starr Distinguished Speaker Lecture. Chetty's research combines empirical evidence and economic theory to help design more effective government policies. His work on tax policy, unemployment insurance, and education has been widely cited in media outlets and Congressional testimony. His current research focuses on equality of opportunity: how can we give children from disadvantaged backgrounds better chances of succeeding? Chetty is a recipient of a MacArthur "Genius" Fellowship and the John Bates Clark medal, given by the American Economic Association to the best American economist under age 40. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 2003 at the age of 23 and was a professor at UC-Berkeley until 2009, when he returned to Harvard as one of the youngest tenured professors in Harvard's history.  Chetty moved to the Department of Economics at Stanford in 2015.    

Presentation:  "Mobility Report Cards: Colleges and Intergenerational Mobility in the United States"


Additional information is available on the broader topic of "Equality of Opportunity".

Location:  4:00 - 6:00 pm at New York University Stern School of Business - The Gardiner Commons, 44 West 4th Street, Room M1-100, New York, NY 10012

Support for this event is provided by the NYU Arts and Science CV Starr Center for Applied Economics and the NYU Stern School of Business Center for Global Economy and Business

Past Speakers

Nicholas Bloom Stanford University April 28, 2016

Nicholas Bloom

Nicholas Bloom

On April 28, 2016, the CV Starr Center welcomed Nicholas Bloom who gave the 5th Annual CV Starr Distinguished lecture. He is a Professor of Economics at Stanford University, a Senior Fellow of SIEPR, and a Co-Director of the Productivity, Innovation and Entrepreneurship program at the National Bureau of Economic Research. He is widely known as an expert on management practices and uncertainty. Professor Bloom is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and is the recipient of numerous awards including an Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship, the Bernacer Prize, the European Investment Bank prize, the Frisch Medal, the Kauffman Medal and a National Science Foundation Career Award. In his talk, Professor Bloom stressed the important role of increasing between-firm inequality in driving up overall income inequality, consistent with the rise in outsourcing. Slides from the talk can be found here.

Esther Duflo Massachusetts Institute of Technology April 23, 2015

Esther Duflo

Esther Duflo

Esther Duflo gave the fourth annual distinguished speaker lecture to the C.V. Starr Center on April 23, 2015.  Professor Duflo is the Abdul Latif Jameel Professor of Poverty Alleviation and Development Economics in the Department of Economics at MIT and a founder and director of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab. Professor Duflo is one of the world’s most influential scholars of economic development and is widely considered to be among the most preeminent empirical experts on the causes and consequences of inequality and poverty. She is the recipient of numerous academic awards, including the CNRS Médaille de L’Innovation (2011), the John Bates Clark Medal for the best economist under 40 (2010), a MacArthur Fellowship (2009), the inaugural Calvó-Armengol International Prize (2009), and the “Best French Young Economist Prize” (Le Monde/Cercle des économistes, 2005).  Professor Duflo gave a plenary talk followed immediately by a reception. In her talk, Professor Duflo spoke about efforts to reduce pollution in India, of which she has been personally involved. She stressed the lack of enforcement rather than regulations as a chief reason for the high levels of water and air pollution. Direct measures to reduce conflicts of interest were implemented as an experimental design and found to greatly improve quality of audit reports. She also proposed the idea that randomly assigned inspections to all firms (regardless of whether they are known to be highly or mildly polluting) could reduce pollution more than inspections targeted to the highest polluters. The reason is that mildly polluting firms may have greater incentives to abate if it’s not too costly, knowing that they may be inspected. Photos from the event follow below.

B. Douglas Bernheim Stanford University April 30, 2014

Douglas Bernheim

B. Douglas Bernheim

B. Douglas Bernheim gave the third annual distinguished speaker lecture to the C.V. Starr Center. Professor Bernheim is the Edward Ames Edmonds Professor of Economics at Stanford University and a renowned theorist of auctions, social interactions, and strategic behavior. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Econometric Society, and is widely considered a leading thinker in the fields of public finance, applied and behavioral econometrics, and microeconomic theory. In his talk, Professor Bernheim emphasized the limitations of our understanding of human behavior and the implications of this observation for theories of economic behavior. He drew a sharp distinction between traditional paradigms of choice determined entirely from a presumed model of preferences, and newer, structurally minimalistic, paradigms that forgo assumptions about preferences and instead use observable information about the structure of decision making to make behavioral predictions and draw welfare conclusions. The slides from his talk can be found here.

Daron Acemoğlu Massachusetts Institute of Technology April 11, 2013

Daron Acemoğlu

Daron Acemoğlu

On April 13, 2013, the C.V. Starr Distinguished Speaker Series welcomed Daron Acemoğlu, Elizabeth and James Killian Professor of Economics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a renowned theorist of political economy and development economics. Professor Acemoğlu gave a plenary talk from 4:00-5:00 pm with a reception immediately following. In his talk, Professor Acemoğlu assessed the effects of industrial policy on innovation and productivity, an especially timely topic in light of the historically large government assistance recently given to the U.S. auto and financial sectors. In his talk, he directly compares the potential benefits for growth and productivity of such policies (such as the employment protection they afford and the potentially valuable support for incumbent research and development activities) against the potential costs of such policies (such as the barriers to entry of more efficient firms such policies create). His analysis used both theoretical tools to model these tradeoffs, and empirical estimation. The slides from his talk are available here.

Paul Milgrom Stanford University April 4, 2012

Paul Milgorm

Paul Milgrom delivering the C.V. Starr Center Distinguished Speaker Series lecture on April 4, 2012

Paul Milgrom, the Shirley and Leonard Ely Professor of Humanities and Sciences at Stanford University and a renowned theorist of auction and pricing strategies, delivered the C.V. Starr Center Distinguished Speaker Series lecture to a broad cross-disciplinary audience on April 4, 2012. The lecture was on Paul’s work designing new incentive auctions for the Federal Communications Commission. Paul is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the recipient of many awards, and is widely considered one of the foremost thinkers of auction theory and market design. A reception, and subsequent meetings with NYU’s own economic theorists, followed the talk.