Published: Mon, October 14, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Duflo ‘humbled’ to win economics Nobel Prize

Duflo ‘humbled’ to win economics Nobel Prize

The 2019 Nobel Prize for economics was awarded to Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer on Monday.

Female economists hold senior positions at bodies such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, but concerns are such over the discipline's gender imbalance that the Royal Economics Society is tomorrow launching a new diversity campaign to address the lack of women taking on the subject at an early age. Until now, 2009 victor Elinor Ostrom of the USA was the only woman to ever win the prize.

Winners are also given a 9 millio-kronor ($918,000) cash prize, a gold medal and a diploma. It was devised in 1968 to mark the 300th anniversary of Sweden's Central Bank, and first awarded in 1969.

"The research conducted by this year's Laureates has considerably improved our ability to fight global poverty".

"Their experimental research methods now entirely dominate development economics", the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said. But it remains a standing rebuke to the profession that the title has only once before been bestowed on a woman in the Nobel's 50-year history, when United States economist Elinor Ostrom also shared the award in 2009.

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Banerjee and Duflo are both at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology while Kremer is at Harvard University. His areas of research are development economics and economic theory.

Banerjee was educated at the University of Calcutta, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) and Harvard University, where he received his PhD in 1988.

Indian-born Abhijit Banerjee is an American citizen while Esther Duflo is French-American.

Austrian author Peter Handke is the victor of Nobel in literature this year and the postponed award for 2018 went to Polish author Olga Tokarczuk.

The Economics Prize wrap wraps up the 2019 Nobel season. The chemistry prize was awarded on October 9 to a trio of pioneers of the modern lithium-ion battery, M. Stanley Whittingham, Akira Yoshino and John Goodenough. The victor of the Peace Prize receives the award in Oslo, Norway. Due to the depreciation in the Swedish krona, the dollar value of the prize has fallen by about 30% over the past decade.

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