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McGee Public Policy Lecture Series

The McGee Lecture Fund was established in 1996 by Mr. William K. McGee, Jr. to support a lecture series intended to bring outstanding economists to campus in the Department of Economics at the College of Arts and Science.

2016-17 McGee Lecture


Robert Gibbons
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
"Organizational Culture and Performance:  A View from Economics"

Tuesday, October 18, 2016
Buttrick Hall 102
4-5:30 pm, with reception to follow

Robert Gibbons is the Sloan Distinguished Professor of Management and a Professor of Applied Economics at the MIT Sloan School of Management, and he is Professor of Economics in MIT’s Department of Economics. He is also the co-principal investigator for the Program on Innovation in Markets and Organizations at MIT Sloan (2002-present).

Gibbons studies the design and performance of organizations and contracts, especially “relational contracts”—agreements so rooted in the parties’ particular circumstances that they are not written down, so that disputes cannot be adjudicated by outsiders such as courts. These contracts arise frequently both within firms such as between headquarters and divisions—and between firms such as in alliances. In some cases, relational contracts appear to be the source of persistent performance differences among seemingly similar firms, plants, and work groups.

His book, Game Theory for Applied Economists (Princeton University Press, 1992), has been translated into Chinese, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, and Spanish. He co-edited the Handbook of Organizational Economics with John Roberts (Princeton University Press, 2013) and he is currently preparing a doctoral text on organizational economics.

Gibbons holds an AB in applied mathematics from Harvard University, an MPhil in economics from Cambridge University, and a PhD in decision sciences from Stanford University. He is a fellow of the Econometric Society and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.


Tuesday, March 1, 2016
"Labor Market Fluidity and Economic Performance "
John Haltiwanger, University of Maryland

Thursday, March 12, 2015
"Irrational Exuberance Revisited"
Robert J. Shiller, Yale University

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014
"A Tale of Two Delayed Economic Recoveries: the 1930s and Today"
Lee E. Ohanian , University of California, Los Angeles 

Friday, Aprtil 5th, 2013
"The Economic Perspective on Climate Change"
William Nordhaus, Sterling Professor of Economics; Cowles Foundation, Yale University

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012
"The Career-Family Conundrum"
Claudia Goldin, Henry Lee Professor of Economics at Harvard University

Thursday, March 24th, 2011
"Inequality at Birth: Some Causes and Consequences"
Janet Currie, Sami Mnaymneh Professor of Economics, Columbia University

Thursday, February 19, 2009
"The Financial Crisis and the Recession: What is Happening and What Should the Government Do About It"
Robert E. Hall, Robert and Carole McNeil Hoover Senior Fellow and Professor of Economics, Stanford University

Monday, December 1, 2008
"The Case for Inheritance Taxation"
Robin Boadway, David Chadwick Smith Chair in Economics at Queen's University

Tuesday, February 12th, 2008
"Income, aging, health and wellbeing: Evidence from the Gallup World Poll"
Angus Deaton, Princeton University

Monday, December 3rd, 2007
"Holdup, Assest Ownership, and Reference Points"
Oliver Hart, Harvard University

Wednesday, January 31, 2007
"Lawlessness and Economics: Alternative Institutions of Economic Governance"
Avinash Dixit, Princeton University

Thursday, November 3, 2005
"Monetary Policy in Brazil"
Marcelo Kfoury Muinhos, Central Bank of Brazil

Thursday, September 16, 2004
Topic: Politics and trade agreements
Mickey Kantor, former U.S. Secretary of Commerce

Wednesday, January 21, 2004
"Healthy, Wealthy and Wise? The Causal Pathways between Health and Socioeconomic Status"
Daniel McFadden, University of California, Berkeley, Nobel Laureate 2000

Thursday, March 27, 2003
"Social Security Reform"
Peter Diamond, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Nobel Laureate 2010

Wednesday April 17, 2002
"Life Earnings and Economic Development"
Robert E. Lucas, Jr, University of Chicago, Nobel Laureate 1995

Seminars and Research

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