Expertly Wrapped

Kellogg School and NU Economics faculty predict 2010 Nobel Economics laureates

If you’re looking for the results of the 2011 Kellogg School/Northwestern University poll, head over to this year’s post.

Update: The winners have been announced! Check out the new post for details on the new laureates and their research.

It’s Nobel Prize season again!

The Nobel Prize in Economics is the last of the famed prizes to be announced, and the predictions for this year are as wide-ranging as ever. I polled the faculty of the Kellogg School of Management and the Department of Economics at Northwestern University for their predictions of who will win the 2010 award. Fifty-three people responded.

Two names topped the list this year—Dale Mortensen and Jean Tirole, each with twelve votes. Mortensen is a labor economist known for his work on unemployment, a fitting field given the economic woes of the last few years. Being a Northwestern economics professor, he may also have home field advantage in this poll. Jean Tirole, a professor at the Industrial Economic Institute and also a favorite in last year’s poll, focuses on game theory, industrial organization, and has written books on financial regulation and financial crises.

Tirole may have an advantage with the prize committee, one respondent wrote, because “Like last year, I think the committee will deliberately avoid taking a North American sensibility, and will put a European stamp on the prize.” But, they acknowledge, finding a co-winner for Tirole could be difficult, hurting his chances. It’s a logical inference given that Nobel Prizes are often awarded to multiple people. That particular respondent favored the team of Sidney Winter and Richard Nelson.

Peter Diamond was another front-runner, garnering eight votes. Diamond, a professor at MIT, is known for his work on Social Security and his role in advising the government on the issue. He also wrote an influential paper on the role of search processes in unemployment.

Rounding out the top five are Lars P. Hansen, a professor at the University of Chicago, and Paul Romer, a professor at Stanford University.

Douglas Diamond, a write-in candidate, received two votes and convincing support from finance professor Josh Rauh. “While Diamond first developed these theories in the 1980s, the recent financial crisis shows that they are completely applicable even in the more complex financial system that has evolved,” Rauh said. “In the 2008 crisis, the repo market played served the same function as the deposits, and the mortgage-backed securities were the long-term assets on bank balance sheets.”

The four names put forth by Thompson Reuters fared poorly in our poll. Nobuhiro Kiyotaki and John H. Moore both received two votes, while Alberto Alesina received one and Kevin M. Murphy none. Of the favorites from last year’s Kellogg School/Northwestern poll, Richard Thaler received four votes this year while Robert Schiller, last year’s top favorite, garnered one.

This year we also asked the faculty which field the winner may come from. Though participation in this optional section was low, behavioral economics and labor economics tied for the most likely field with three votes a piece.

The Nobel Prize in Economics will be announced on Monday, October 11 at 6:00 AM CDT (11:00 AM GMT).