Friday, November 9, 2007
Bono in Economics department at MIT
"When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro," wrote Hunter S. Thompson (1971). Bono's visit to the Economics department at MIT surrouded by eminent economists Bengt Holmstrom and Abhijit Banerjee is just another instance where the weird rock star might have turned into a pro of development economics. Are we to expect a nobel prize for Bono for his promotion of development agendas at the grassroots level any time soon? Can MIT endorse him for such a prize? Is such a prize likely after the former U.S. vice president Al Gore received one for a similar type of contribution? Is the Economics Nobel Prize and the Nobel Peace Prize increasingly overlapping? If "Development is Freedom" as Sen has suggested (Sen, 2001), are we to expect that freedom to be our new Economic Imperialism? (Lazear, 1999) Is that good news for our profession?
(Photo courtesy: Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab, MIT)