Stigler Lectures

Upcoming Lectures

Please check back soon for our upcoming 2020 lecture events.

Past Lectures

November 18, 2019

Super Pumped: The Battle for Uber

Award-winning technology reporter Mike Isaac's Super Pumped presents the dramatic story of Uber, the Silicon Valley startup at the center of one of the great venture capital power struggles of our time. Mr. Isaac will be in conversation with Chicago Booth's John Paul Rollert. Book signing to follow. Co-sponsored by the Stigler Center and the Harry L. Davis Center for Leadership.

Books will be available for purchase at the event.

Mike Isaac is a technology reporter at the New York Times whose Uber coverage won the Gerald Loeb Award for distinguished business reporting. He writes frequently about Uber, Facebook, and other Silicon Valley giants for the Times, and appears often on CNBC and MSNBC. He lives in San Francisco.

John Paul Rollert is Adjunct Assistant Professor of Behavioral Science at the Booth School of Business. John Paul Rollert's teaching and research focus on the intellectual history of capitalism, the ethics of leadership, and the application of empathy to law, business, and politics. Rollert has been published in a variety of academic journals. In addition to his academic work, he frequently writes on business, law, and politics for a variety of popular publications. For writing featured in The Atlantic, he was recognized by the Society of American Business Editors and Writers in its 2017 “Best in Business” Competition. A graduate of Harvard College, Rollert earned his JD from Yale Law School and a PhD from The John U. Nef Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago. Since 2005, he has taught courses at Harvard in ethics, politics, and leadership.

6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

The event will take place at the Gleacher Center, Room 621 - 450 N. Cityfront Drive, Chicago 60611

November 12, 2019

Capital: Where Does It Come From?

Join the Stigler Center and the College’s Law, Letters, and Society Program for a talk with Katharina Pistor on her new book, The Code of Capital: How the Law Creates Wealth and Inequality.

Capital is the defining feature of modern economies, yet most people have no idea where it actually comes from. What is it, exactly, that transforms mere wealth into an asset that automatically creates more wealth? The Code of Capital explains how capital is created behind closed doors in the offices of private attorneys, and why this little-known fact is one of the biggest reasons for the widening wealth gap between the holders of capital and everybody else.

Katharina Pistor is the Edwin B. Parker Professor of Comparative Law at Columbia Law School and Director of the Law School’s Center on Global Legal Transformation. Her research and teaching spans corporate law, corporate governance, money and finance, property rights, and comparative law and legal institutions. She has published widely in legal and social science journals. In 2012 she was co-recipient (with Martin Hellwig) of the Max Planck Research Award on International Financial Regulation; in 2014 she received the Allen & Overy Prize for the best working paper on law of the European Corporation Governance Institute; and in 2015 she was elected member of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences. She is also the recipient of research grants by the Institute for New Economic Thinking and the National Science Foundation.

Copies of Katharina Pistor’s new book, The Code of Capital: How the Law Creates Wealth and Inequality, will be available for sale and signing.

11:45 a.m. Registration 

12:00 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

1:00 p.m.  Adjournment and book signing

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The event will take place in Harper Center Room C09 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave).

November 8, 2019

How Putin and the Russian Oligarchs are Corrupting the World

Join us for a conversation with hedge fund CEO, activist, and author Bill Browder and Chicago Booth professor Luigi Zingales on crony capitalism in Russia, its domestic and international implications, and what could be done to prevent Putin and the Russian oligarchs from corrupting the world.

Bill Browder’s journey started on the South Side of Chicago and moved through Stanford Business School to the dog-eat-dog world of hedge fund investing in the 1990s. It continued in Moscow, where Browder made his fortune heading the largest investment fund in Russia after the Soviet Union’s collapse. But when he exposed the corrupt oligarchs who were robbing the companies in which he was investing, Vladimir Putin turned on him and, in 2005, had him expelled from Russia.

Bill Browder (AB’85) is the founder and CEO of Hermitage Capital Management, which was the investment adviser to the largest foreign investment fund in Russia until 2005, when Bill was denied entry to the country and declared a “threat to national security” as a result of his battle against corporate corruption. Following his expulsion, the Russian authorities raided his offices, seized Hermitage Fund’s investment companies and used them to steal $230 million of taxes that the companies had previously paid. When Browder’s lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky, investigated the crime, he was arrested by the same officers he implicated, tortured for 358 days, and killed in custody at the age of 37 in November 2009. Since then, Browder has been fighting for justice for Mr. Magnitsky. The Russian government exonerated and even promoted some of the officials involved. Browder took the case to the US, where his campaigning led to the US Congress adopting the ‘Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act’ in 2012, which imposed visa sanctions and asset freezes on those involved in the detention, ill-treatment and death of Sergei Magnitsky (as well as in other human rights abuses). Browder is also the author of Red Notice: A True Story of High Finance, Murder, and One Man’s Fight for Justice.

Luigi Zingales (moderator) is the Robert C. McCormack Distinguished Service Professor of Entrepreneurship and Finance and the Charles M. Harper Faculty Fellow and Director of the Stigler Center at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. His research interests span from corporate governance to financial development, from political economy to the economic effects of culture. He has published extensively in the major economics and financial journals. He also wrote two best-selling books and recently launched the Capitalisn't podcast with Katherine Waldock from Georgetown University.

11:45 a.m. Registration 

12:00 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

1:00 p.m. Adjournment

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The event will take place in Harper Center Room C09 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave).

October 14, 15, & 17, 2019

When Things Go Wrong – Practical Examples of Managing Lending Risk with Roselyne Renel

The major causes of banking problems, both in developed and developing countries, have historically been directly related to lax credit standards, poor portfolio risk management or a lack of attention to changes in economic or other circumstances. However, the relationship between an entity’s financial ability to honour its debt and understanding other inter-related risks affecting the probability of default of a counterparty or an instrument is a critical part of lending risks.

Join us for three interrelated lunch seminars with Roselyne Renel to discuss practical examples of managing risks. The sessions will examine what can go wrong in transactions using actual transactions/situations.

Roselyne Renel is a seasoned financial services executive with deep domain expertise managing risk across a broad range of asset classes, products and client segments. Highly skilled in credit, market, liquidity and strategic risks, both in developed and emerging markets, across a wide range of banking and financial services sectors. She is a career risk officer with over 25 years of experience in global financial services across both emerging and developed markets in all areas of corporate and institutional banking, with a strong focus on derivatives and capital markets execution, structured products, commodities, corporate finance, private equity as well as retail and private banking. Based in London, she has led global teams for both Deutsche Bank, where she spent the majority of her career (just over 16 years), and Standard Chartered Bank, where she has been for the last 5 ½ years. She is passionate in championing the issues of women, girls and the underprivileged.

Monday, October 14: 12-1pm | Harper Center C05
Lending Risks in Emerging Markets
| View Slides

This session will look at examples from emerging markets corporate borrowers where we will discuss, based on client data/information and transaction structure, what are the potential risks or areas of focus and whether approval to the proposed deal should be granted. We will then examine what could go wrong, what did go wrong and how was the exposure recovered.

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Tuesday, October 15: 12-1pm | Harper Center C05
Lending Risks with Corporate Borrowers
| View Slides

This session will examine examples from developed countries corporate borrowers and also touch on the retail sector, both in emerging and non-emerging markets.

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Thursday, October 17: 12-1pm | Harper Center C25
The Financial Risks of Climate Change
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The impact of climate change will result in substantial structural adjustments to the global economy. These in turn will inevitably impact the balance sheet and operations of banks, bringing risks as well as opportunities. Regulators globally have put climate risk at the top of their agenda, resulting in a paradigm shift for lending institutions from a strategic, client and disclosure perspective. This session will examine what can go wrong because of climate risk, and why there is a need for financial institutions to address 'climate' as a financial risk and not only as a potential reputational risk.

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All seminars take place from 12 to 1 p.m. in Harper Center (5807 S Woodlawn Ave).

October 10, 2019

Building a Capitalism for All in Southeastern Europe

Thirty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the start of the transition to capitalism, economies in Southeastern Europe (SEE) still display elements of crony capitalism, characterized by weak rule of law, corruption, patronage, and strong links between big business and political elites. Governments in the region enacted pro-business, not pro-market policies, while social safety nets and protective labor codes were downgraded. What are possible solutions to the current situation?

Join the Stigler Center for a discussion with former Finance Minister of North Macedonia Dragan Tevdovski on how to build a capitalism that works for all in Southeastern Europe – a region of vast geopolitical importance.

Dragan Tevdovski is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Economics, University Ss. Cyril and Methodius (Skopje, North Macedonia), where he teaches quantitative methods for finance and statistics for business and economics. He served as Finance Minister of the Republic of North Macedonia from 2017 to 2019. During his term, the Ministry implemented several systematic reforms, and the public finance system stabilized. He is the author of two university textbooks: Statistics for Business and Economics and Introduction to Time Series Analysis. His research focuses on macroeconomic policies and financial markets in SEE countries. In 2016, he won the award for “Best Scientist” at the University Ss. Cyril and Methodius in social sciences.

11:45 a.m. Registration 

12:00 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

1:00 p.m. Adjournment

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The event will take place in Harper Center Room C05.

September 23-24, 2019

The Political Economy of the Revolving Door with Benjamin C.K. Egerod

The movement of public officials into the private sector is a pervasive feature of modern politics. By walking through the so-called revolving door between business and politics, former legislators, staffers and bureaucrats can make huge salaries. But why are firms willing to make these large investments in people with a background in politics? Which incentives does the revolving door create for public servants who are about to leave office?

Join us for two interrelated lunch seminars taught by Benjamin Egerod on the role of the revolving door in modern politics. The first session will examine the type of public official that chooses to walk through the revolving door, what those officials stand to gain from it, and how this shapes their behavior while they are still hold public office. The second session will investigate how firms can benefit from hiring people with a background in politics.

Benjamin C.K. Egerod is a researcher at the Department of Political Science, University of Copenhagen. He received the 2018/19 Stigler Dissertation Award and was a Bradley Fellow at the Stigler Center. His dissertation focused on the United States Congress and investigated how post-elective career ambitions change the behavior of legislators, while they are still in office, and how political connections can benefit large American firms, for instance, by changing the way bureaucrats enforce rules against them. More broadly, his research examines the role of political connections in interactions between business and government.

Monday, September 23: 12-1pm
Which incentives does the revolving door create and who reacts to them?

This session will review recent research on legislators, legislative staff, and bureaucrats that leave office for revolving door employment. We will first describe the types of people that are attracted by the prospect of private sector employment. We will then proceed to examine what they gain personally by transitioning into the private sector. Finally, we will investigate how the potential for lucrative employment shapes the behavior of officials while they are still in the public’s service.

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Tuesday, September 24, 12-1pm
Why do firms hire people with a background in politics?

In this session, we will discuss recent evidence on the financial gains companies can make by hiring people with a background in politics. First, we will look at research into contract lobbying firms, and examine the types of clients that are attracted to politically connected lobbying firms. Second, we will discuss the literature that investigates how the stock market reacts, when a listed company becomes politically connected. Finally, we will examine whether firms can use political connections to get better terms in their interactions with government officials. This session will shed light on the role that political connections play in the modern political economy. This will inform us about the role that former public officials play when they transition into the private sector.

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All seminars take place from 12 to 1 p.m. in Harper Center, Room C09 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave)

May 29, 2019

The Economy and the 2020 Election: What Happens Next?

Whether it’s trade wars, modern monetary theory, or breaking up big tech companies, the 2020 election will have a huge impact on the global economy. But which of these ideas could actually happen? And what would they do to the economy? Join us for an event with Booth professor and former Federal Reserve Governor Randall Kroszner to break it all down. In a conversation moderated by Adam Creighton, economics editor at The Australian and 2019 journalist in residence fellow at the Stigler Center, professor Kroszner will discuss the economic policies of Democratic candidates and what might play out over the campaign, pressures on the Federal Reserve, and what to expect from a second Trump term.

Randall Kroszner is Deputy Dean for Executive Programs and Norman R. Bobins Professor of Economics. Dr. Kroszner served as a Governor of the Federal Reserve System from 2006 until 2009. From 2001 to 2003, Dr. Kroszner was a member of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers (CEA). Since 1990, Dr. Kroszner has taught at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Dr. Kroszner received a Sc.B. in applied mathematics-economics from Brown University and an M.A. and Ph.D., both in economics, from Harvard University.

Adam Creighton (moderator) is the economics editor at The Australian. An award-winning economics journalist with a special interest in tax and financial policy, he spent most of 2016 at The Wall Street Journal in Washington, DC. He won the Citi Journalism Award for Excellence in 2015, and was runner up in the internationally recognized Bastiat Prize for Journalism in 2014. He started his career at the Reserve Bank of Australia and studied economics at Oxford, where he was a Commonwealth Scholar. In 2017 he was appointed to the National Archives of Australia Advisory Council

11:45 a.m. Discussion and Q&A

1:15 p.m. Adjournment

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The event will take place in Harper Center Room C25.

May 28, 2019

Finance, Technology, and Society: A Conversation with Anat Admati

Join the Stigler Center for a conversation on finance, technology and society with Professor Anat Admati exploring the way and reasons that market and policy may fail in these sectors and what we must do to address such failures. For example, are big banks and big technology companies efficient for serving our needs, or are they symptoms of underlying problems? Should policy support all small community banks and every technology startup?

Anat Admati is the George G.C. Parker Professor of Finance and Economics at Stanford University Graduate School of Business (GSB), a Director of the GSB Corporations and Society Initiative, and a senior fellow at Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research. She has written extensively on information dissemination in financial markets, portfolio management, financial contracting, corporate governance, and banking. Since 2010, Admati has been active in the policy debate on financial regulations. She is the co-author, with Martin Hellwig, of the highly acclaimed book The Bankers New Clothes; What’s Wrong with Banking and What to Do About It. In 2014, Admati was named by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world and by Foreign Policy magazine as among 100 global thinkers. Admati’s current research, teaching and advocacy focus on the complex interactions between business, law, and policy that determine whether and how well private and governments serve society.

Guy Rolnik (moderator) is a clinical associate professor of strategic management at Chicago Booth. For the last 28 years, he has lived and worked at the intersection of business, finance, regulation, politics, and the media. First, as a financial journalist and editor, later as a business entrepreneur and founder of a media company, and in the last decade as a policy entrepreneur—using media as a tool for driving structural reforms in the economy. Rolnik’s work as a founder and chief editor of a leading business newspaper and columnist influenced in a dramatic way the ideas, norms, and values in Israeli political economy and brought about significant changes in regulatory policies and legislation. In this process, he has gained a unique understanding of the interplay of the three worlds: business, regulation, and media.

11:45 a.m. Registration

12:00 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

1:00 p.m. Adjournment

Watch video »

The event will take place in Harper Center Room C06.

May 22-24, 2019

"Management Strategy and Beyond" with Raffaella Sadun

Join us for three stand-alone, interrelated lunch seminars taught by Raffaella Sadun on the role of management practices—and managers—for organizational performance. The sessions will include an overview of studies documenting the variation in the adoption of management practices across firms and countries, as well as its impact on firm performance. We will explore the reasons for the variation in management, and conclude with a session exploring the role of management in the public sector.

Raffaella Sadun is the Thomas S. Murphy Associate Professor of Business Administration in the Strategy Unit at Harvard Business School. Her research focuses on the economics of productivity, management and organizational change. Her research documents the economic and cultural determinants of managerial choices, as well as their implications for organizational performance in both the private and public sector (including healthcare and education). She is among the founders of the World Management Survey and the Executive Time Use Study. Professor Sadun's work has appeared in leading peer reviewed journals including the American Economic Review, the Quarterly Journal of Economics and the Economic Journal, and has been featured in the business press, including The New York Times, The Economist, The Wall Street Journal, and the Financial Times. She is a Faculty Research Fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research, Faculty Associate at the Centre for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics, Research Affiliate at the Center for Economic Policy Research and Research Associate in the Ariadne Labs Program in the Department of Health Policy and Management at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She was also nominated as a Junior Faculty Fellow at the Kauffman Foundation.

Wednesday, May 22: 12-1pm
Does management matter?

This session will review the evidence on the quality of management practices across firms, focusing on both variations across firms and their effect on firm performance. We will review findings emerging from “big-data” documenting the adoption of management practices across and within countries, as well as experimental studies aiming at identifying causal effects.

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Thursday, May 23, 12-1pm
Why does management vary across firms?

This session studies why the quality of management varies across firms, focusing on the role of “complements”. We will explore contextual factors (e.g. competitive pressure) as well as internal choices (e.g. decentralization and incentives), which shape the returns to structured management practices. We shall also study emerging evidence on the relationship between leadership behavior and management practices.

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Friday, May 24, 12-1pm
The role of management in the public sector

This session will consider the extent to which management affects the performance of public sector organizations. We will explore emerging evidence from a wide variety of sectors, focusing in particular on healthcare.

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All seminars take place from 12 to 1 p.m. in Harper Center, Room C25 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave)

May 14, 2019

The War Between Monopolies and Populism

Join the Stigler Center for a conversation on the impact of concentrated financial power and consumerism on American politics, the emergence of populism and authoritarianism, and the future of democracy in the US and beyond

Matt Stoller is a fellow at the Open Markets Institute where he focuses on competition policy. He is currently writing a book on monopoly power in the 20th century, Goliath: The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Populism. Previously, he was a Senior Policy Advisor to the Senate Budget Committee. He also worked in the U.S. House of Representatives on financial services policy, including Dodd-Frank, the Federal Reserve, and the foreclosure crisis. He has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The New Republic, Vice, and Salon.

Guy Rolnik (moderator) is a clinical associate professor of strategic management at Chicago Booth. For the last 28 years, he has lived and worked at the intersection of business, finance, regulation, politics, and the media. First, as a financial journalist and editor, later as a business entrepreneur and founder of a media company, and in the last decade as a policy entrepreneur—using media as a tool for driving structural reforms in the economy. Rolnik’s work as a founder and chief editor of a leading business newspaper and columnist influenced in a dramatic way the ideas, norms, and values in Israeli political economy and brought about significant changes in regulatory policies and legislation. In this process, he has gained a unique understanding of the interplay of the three worlds: business, regulation, and media.

11:45 a.m. Registration

12:00 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

1:00 p.m. Adjournment

The event will take place in Harper Center Room 104.

Watch video »

May 14, 2019

Big Tech: A Disruptor of Democracy?

The Chicago Council on Global Affairs and the Stigler Center present a joint lecture discussing the rising policy concerns of large digital platforms and their impact on democracy, featuring Prof. Julia Cage (Sciences Po Paris), Dina Srinivasan (Tech Entrepreneur), and Matt Stoller (Fellow, Open Markets Institute). Moderated by Prof. Guy Rolnik (Chicago Booth School).

The tech industry is already under siege by the press, the public, and regulators around the world. It was only in 2018 that big tech companies were implicated not just in data misuse and election interference, but also in spreading disinformation and even hate speech – causing, some to say, a major threat to global democracy. While companies such as Amazon determines how people shop, Google controls how people acquire knowledge, and Facebook regulates how everyone communicates, it is these exact companies that generate undeniable benefits to society by informing consumers, stoking entrepreneurship, and in many ways, prompting transparency. Should then democracies impose stricter regulations and antitrust actions in ways that promote social welfare and open markets - and limit big tech’s vast control and influence? When and how should their power be checked, without the expense of stifling innovation and competition?

2:45 p.m. Registration

3:00 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

4:00 p.m. Adjournment

Chicago Council on Global Affairs Conference Center
130 East Randolph Street Chicago, IL 60601

May 14, 2019

EU vs. US: Regulating Big Tech

Join the European Policy Hub and the Stigler Center on a panel discussion comparing the regulatory approaches of the US and their European counterparts towards big tech, featuring Sean Durkin (VP at Charles River Associates), Prof. Jacques Cremer (Toulouse School of Economics), Sandeep Vaheesan (Legal Director, Open Markets Institute), and Prof. Guy Rolnik (Chicago Booth School).

Antitrust regulation of global technology corporations has emerged as one of the most challenging and pressing policy questions of our time. Issues ranging from consumer welfare to sanctity of elections are at stake. So far, US has followed a largely hands-off approach while Europe has slapped the big tech with several penalties. However, some US presidential hopefuls, led by Senator Warren, have openly called for punitive measures in case they are elected. Our panel, comprising European and American academic and professional experts, will tackle this intricate and broad topic in a holistic fashion. Among others, they will deal with the following questions: What are the differences between European and American approaches? Have the European Commission's fines on companies such as Google and Facebook served their intended purpose? Should the use of private data be regulated?

5:00 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

7:00 p.m. Adjournment

Keller Center Harris School of Public Policy
1307 East 60th Street, Room 1022
Chicago, IL 60637

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May 7-9, 2019

"Public Sector Personnel Economics" with John M. de Figueiredo

Join us for three stand-alone, interrelated lunch seminars taught by John M. de Figueiredo on personnel economics of the public sector. We will discuss how politics, expertise, race, and gender affect the careers of U.S. Federal Government civil servants and, in a group discussion, what this might mean for the quality of civil servants and the U.S. policies they generate.

John M. de Figueiredo is the Russell M. Robinson II Professor of Law, Strategy, and Economics at the Duke Law School and the Fuqua School of Business. He is also Director of the Duke Center for Institutional and Organizational Performance, and a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research. de Figueiredo studies competitive strategy, innovation strategy, political and legal strategy, and law and economics. His research in law and economics and "non-market" strategy explores how firms use political influence, regulatory lobbying, and strategic litigation to enhance competitive performance. He has recently completed a study of careers in the U.S. federal civil service covering 6 million employees over a 24 year time period. Prior to joining Duke University, he was on the faculties of the UCLA Anderson School and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan School. He has also held long-term visiting positions at Princeton University, Harvard Law School, INSEAD, the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, NJ, and, most recently, at Stanford Business School. de Figueiredo holds a Ph.D. in Business Economics from the University of California, Berkeley; an M.Sc. in Economics from the London School of Economics; and an A.B. in Economics from Harvard University.

Tuesday, May 7: 12-1pm
Elections, Ideology, and Turnover in the U.S. Federal Government

A defining feature of public sector employment is the regular change in elected leadership. Yet, we know little about how elections influence civil servant careers. In this session we describe how elections can alter policy outputs and disrupt civil servants’ influence over agency decisions, potentially shaping their career choices.

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Wednesday, May 8, 12-1pm
Grade Inflation: The Changing Composition of Expertise in the Federal Government

Wages in the federal government have risen substantially over a quarter century. This session studies the source of these changes and examines the role of human capital and expertise in driving these wage changes.

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Thursday, May 9, 12-1pm
Are There Race and Gender Wage Gaps in the Government?

The race and gender wage gap has been thoroughly documented in the private sector. In this session we will examine the presence and sources of wage gaps in the federal government.

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All seminars take place from 12 to 1 p.m. in Harper Center, Room C05 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave)

May 2, 2019

Winners Take All: What are the Economic and Social Costs of Altruism?

On May 2, join former New York Times columnist Anand Giridharadas and Booth professor Marianne Bertrand as they discuss the themes of economic and social costs of altruism in Giridharadas’ new book, Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World, in which he argues that the global elite's efforts to "change the world" often serve to preserve the status quo and obscure their role in causing the problems they later seek to solve.

During lunch, Giridharadas and Bertrand will discuss the implications of the rich and powerful fighting for equality and justice and what that means for democracy. “We see how they rebrand themselves as saviors of the poor; how they lavishly reward ‘thought leaders’ who redefine ‘change’ in winner-friendly ways; and how they constantly seek to do more good but never less harm,” Giridharadas writes in Winners Take All.

Giridharadas' book will be available for purchase at the event, courtesy of the Seminary Co-op.

This event is cohosted by Chicago Booth’s Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation, the Stigler Center for the Study of the Economy and the State, and the Institute of Politics at the University of Chicago. This event is part of UChicago Innovation Fest 2019.

Anand Giridharadas is the author of The True American and India Calling. He was a foreign correspondent and columnist for The New York Times from 2005 to 2016, and has also written for The Atlantic, The New Republic, and The New Yorker. He is an Aspen Institute fellow, an on-air political analyst for MSNBC, and a former McKinsey analyst. He teaches journalism at New York University and has spoken on the main stage of TED. His writing has been honored by the Society of Publishers in Asia, the Poynter Fellowship at Yale, and the New York Public Library's Helen Bernstein Award. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Marianne Bertrand is the Chris P. Dialynas Distinguished Service Professor of Economics at at Chicago Booth, where she is also faculty director of Booth’s Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation and faculty director of the Poverty Lab at the University of Chicago Urban Labs. She is a Research Fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research, the Center for Economic Policy Research, and the Institute for the Study of Labor. Professor Bertrand is an applied micro-economist whose research covers the fields of labor economics, corporate finance, and development economics. Her work has been published widely, including numerous research articles in the Quarterly Journal of Economics, the Journal of Political Economy, the American Economic Review, and the Journal of Finance.

The conversation will take place from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Harper Center, Room 104 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave)

March 5, 2019

Raghuram Rajan on How Markets and the State Leave the Community Behind

Join the Stigler Center for a conversation with Chicago Booth professor Raghuram Rajan – one of the most important economic thinkers of our time – on the current populist backlash against globalization and the release of his new book The Third Pillar: How Markets and the State Leave the Community Behind. The conversation will be moderated by Chicago Booth professor Luigi Zingales.

Raghuram Rajan has an unparalleled vantage point onto the social and economic consequences of globalization and their ultimate effect on our politics. In The Third Pillar he offers a magnificent big-picture framework for understanding how these three forces–the state, markets, and our communities–interact, why things begin to break down, and how we can find our way back to a more secure and stable plane.

The “third pillar” is the community we live in. Economists all too often understand their field as the relationship between markets and the state, and they leave squishy social issues for other people. That’s not just myopic, Rajan argues; it’s dangerous.

Raghuram Rajan is the Katherine Dusak Miller Distinguished Service Professor of Finance at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He was the 23rd Governor of the Reserve Bank of India between September 2013 and September 2016. Euromoney magazine named him Central Banker of the Year in 2014. Between 2003 and 2006, Dr. Rajan was the Chief Economist at the International Monetary Fund. He co-authored Saving Capitalism from the Capitalists with Luigi Zingales in 2003. He then wrote Fault Lines: How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten the World Economy, for which he was awarded the Financial Times-Goldman Sachs prize for best business book in 2010.

Luigi Zingales is the Robert C. McCormack Distinguished Service Professor of Entrepreneurship and Finance and the Charles M. Harper Faculty Fellow and Director of the Stigler Center at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He launched the Capitalisn't podcast with Katherine Waldock in January 2018.

5:00 p.m. Registration and reception

6:00 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

7:15 p.m. Adjournment and book signing

Gleacher Center, Room 621 - 450 N. Cityfront Drive, Chicago 60611

Watch video »

February 26, 2019

Big Data and AI: Finance, Economics, and Beyond

Join the Stigler Center for a conversation with big data and finance expert Wei Pan and Chicago Booth professor Michael Minnis on the challenges and opportunities of big data and AI in finance, economics, and beyond.

Topics covered will include the use of smart phone location data to track real-time consumer behavior and measure industrial activities, and the challenges of AI and big data in asset management and alpha generation. The conversation will also explore the potential applications of such technology for measuring global economic activities across countries with high accuracy, real-time update, and comparability for macroeconomics analysis, as well as the implications for privacy, capital allocation, and other spheres.

Wei Pan is a renowned researcher in big data and finance. He has spent the last eight years studying, measuring and predicting human and economic activities using modern sensing and modeling techniques. Pan previously worked at Fidelity Investments under the Chief Economist where he focused on systemic research and the Flash Crash. He also worked at Google Research China on Google’s first real-time indexing system. Pan published his first AI research paper in the world’s top AI research journal during his undergraduate studies. Select honors include Best Undergraduate Dissertation Award, Tsinghua University, 2007, DARPA Network Challenge Winner, 2009, Emerging Leader in Signal Processing and Multimedia, IBM Research, 2010 and NetSci Best Student Talk Award in 2012. He has published over 20 research papers in journals such as Science, and his research work has been covered by media outlets such as The New York Times, CNN, Technology Review, New Scientist, The Atlantic, and others. Pan has been a frequent commentator and columnist in both the US and China on technology and data. Pan holds a PhD in Computational Social Science from the MIT Media Lab, spent two years in the Computer Science Department at Dartmouth College, and also holds a Bachelor of Engineering from Tsinghua University in Computer Science.

Michael Minnis (moderator) studies the role of accounting information in allocating investment efficiently by both managers and capital providers. His recent research focuses on understanding the role of privately held companies in the US economy and how these firms use financial reporting to access, deploy, and manage capital. He particularly enjoys identifying unique data and methods to empirically examine issues in a novel way. In 2018, Minnis became a member of the Private Company Council, the primary advisory council to the Financial Accounting Standards Board on private company issues. In this role he helps FASB understand the effects of accounting standards on private companies and helps shape new standards as they relate to private companies. He has also been engaged in consulting projects, working with the investment bank Lincoln International to develop and launch the Lincoln Middle Market Index which tracks the value of private middle market companies. Prior to pursuing his PhD, Minnis worked in a variety of professional roles. He first started in corporate finance at Eli Lilly and Company, Inc. and later at Fitzgerald | Isaac, p.c. as a certified public accountant. Building on his knowledge and experience, Minnis went on to found Controller Associates LLC. His firm provided part-time controller and CFO services to start-ups, small companies, and non-profit organizations, as well as a variety of financial statement analysis and consulting services. He sold the firm to Milestone Advisors in 2006. Minnis received his PhD from the University of Michigan and his BS from the University of Illinois.

11:45 a.m. Registration

12:00 noon Address and Q&A

1:00 p.m. Adjournment

Harper Center C05
5807 S Woodlawn Ave
Chicago, IL 60637

Watch video »

February 22, 2019

Italy and the Future of Transatlantic Relations - Ambassador of Italy to the US

Join the Stigler Center for a conversation on Italy and the future of transatlantic relations with His Excellency Armando Varricchio, Ambassador of Italy to the United States.

His Excellency Armando Varricchio presented his credentials as Ambassador of Italy to Washington on March 2, 2016. He had previously served as Head of the Economic, Trade and Scientific Affairs Section of the Embassy from 2002-2006. Prior to this, he held many high-ranking positions both within the Italian government and abroad. In particular, he specialized in European and transatlantic affairs during his years at the Italian Representation to the European Union and at the Commission. He previously served as Ambassador to Belgrade, and before that, as a young diplomat in Budapest during the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact and the Soviet Union. While Chief Diplomatic Advisor to the Presidents of the Council of Ministers Enrico Letta and Matteo Renzi, and Deputy Diplomatic Advisor to the President of the Republic, Giorgio Napolitano, he handled some of the most delicate international dossiers, with a particular focus on security issues. He has a specific expertise in the field of global issues, as he served as Personal Representative (“Sherpa”), at G7/8 and G20 summits, both at a national and a European level. Ambassador Varricchio graduated in International Relations from the University of Padua in 1985 (Summa con Laude), entered the Foreign Service in 1986, and was promoted to the rank of Ambassador in 2014. Prior to embarking on the diplomatic career, he worked in the private sector as Assistant to the Director of the Finance Section of the Marzotto textile group. Ambassador Varricchio has been bestowed with the highest Italian award, Knight of the Grand Cross, as well as with numerous honours from foreign countries.

11:45 a.m. Registration

12:00 noon Address and Q&A

1:00 p.m. Adjournment

Harper Center 104
5807 S Woodlawn Ave
Chicago, IL 60637

Watch video »

February 4, 2019

Farm to Table: Weed Killer, Cancer, and Corporate Power

Join the Stigler Center for a conversation with award-winning investigative journalists Carey Gillam and Bethany McLean on Gillam’s new book, Whitewash: The Story of a Weed Killer, Cancer, and the Corruption of Science.

Whitewash uncovers one of the most controversial stories in the history of food and agriculture. Monsanto's Roundup (glyphosate) is the world's most popular weed killer. For decades it has been deemed safe, but a growing body of evidence indicates otherwise. Gillam writes about farm families devastated by cancer, scientists whose reputations have been smeared, the arm twisting of regulators, and corporate efforts to manipulate public perception. The book is more than an exposé about the hazards of one chemical or even the influence of one company. It is a story of power, politics, and the consequences of putting corporate interests ahead of public safety.

Carey Gillam is a veteran journalist, researcher and writer with more than 25 years experience covering corporate news, including 17 years as a senior correspondent for Reuters international news service. She has specialty knowledge in the rise of biotech crop technology and associated pesticide product development along with the regulatory issues surrounding both. Gillam now works as a freelance writer and researcher on food and chemical policy issues and directs research for the nonprofit consumer group U.S. Right to Know. Gillam has won several industry awards for her work and has been recognized as one of the top journalists in the country covering food and agriculture. She is a frequent commentator on issues involving food and agriculture.

Bethany McLean (moderator) is a contributing editor at Vanity Fair and a contributor at CNBC. She was previously an editor-at-large at Fortune. Prior to joining Fortune, she was an investment analyst at Goldman Sachs. She is an investigative journalist known for her work on the Enron scandal and the 2008 financial crisis, and coauthored the bestseller, The Smartest Guys in the Room: The Amazing Rise and Scandalous Fall of Enron. A documentary based on the book was nominated for an Academy Award in 2006. McLean also coauthored All the Devils Are Here: The Hidden History of the Financial Crisis, and wrote Shaky Ground: The Strange Saga of the US Mortgage Giants. Her latest book is Saudi America: The Truth About Fracking and How It’s Changing the World.

5:30 p.m. Registration and reception

6:00 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

7:15 p.m. Adjournment and book signing

Gleacher Center, Room 621 - 450 N. Cityfront Drive, Chicago 60611

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January 17, 2019

We the Populists: A Conversation with David Leonhardt

Join the Institute of Politics and the Stigler Center as we welcome Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist David Leonhardt for a deep dive into populism in America. Prior to becoming an opinion writer for The New York Times, Mr. Leonhardt was the founding editor of the Times’s Upshot section. He has also served as Washington bureau chief. This conversation will be moderated by Luigi Zingales.

Since Donald Trump’s victory in the 2016 presidential election, “populism” has become a buzzword in political analysis. (You can even take a quiz to find out how populist you are!) But what exactly does American populism look like, and how does it differ on the left and on the right?

Who are these “ordinary people,” and how are they voting? Is the average American much more economically liberal – and socially conservative – than previously assumed? How should 2020 presidential hopefuls position themselves to harness populist energy?

5:00 p.m. Registration

5:30 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

6:45 p.m. Adjournment

Quadrangle Club
Main Dining Room
1155 E 57th St. Chicago, IL 60637

Watch video »

November 12, 2018

Not Your Typical Short Seller: A Conversation with Fahmi Quadir

Join the Stigler Center for a conversation with short-only hedge fund chief Fahmi Quadir and Booth Professor Luigi Zingales on short selling, regulation, exposing corporate fraud, countering retaliation, and thriving in a sometimes-reviled maverick industry lacking diversity.

Fahmi Quadir is the founder and chief investment officer of Safkhet Capital—a New York based short-only hedge fund focused on fraud identification and deep forensic research, which she founded in 2017 at the age of 26. Her dedication, skill, and courage in uncovering fraud through forensic due diligence has earned her the nickname of “The Assassin”. Previously, Quadir managed short investments at Krensavage Asset Management, where she played a pivotal role in successfully shorting Valeant Pharmaceuticals during a bull market. Quadir began her career at Deallus Consulting, where she advised executives at global pharmaceutical companies on strategy and achieving a competitive edge. The American-born daughter of Bangladeshi immigrants, Quadir graduated from Harvey Mudd College with a Bachelor’s of Science in Mathematics and Biology. While attending school, Quadir was a New York Academy of Sciences Fellow at the Maimonides Medical Center, James Simons Fellow at the Stony Brook University Medical Center, a researcher at Harvey Mudd College, and Strauss Research Fellow at ICDDR,B. She was chosen to the Forbes 30 Under 30 list for 2018 in the Finance category and she was also featured in an episode of hit Netflix show Dirty Money.

Luigi Zingales (moderator) is the Robert C. McCormack Distinguished Service Professor of Entrepreneurship and Finance and the Charles M. Harper Faculty Fellow and Director of the Stigler Center at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He launched the Capitalisn't podcast with Katherine Waldock in January 2018.

11:45 a.m. Registration

12:00 noon Discussion and Q&A

1:00 p.m. Adjournment

Harper Center 104
5807 S Woodlawn Ave
Chicago, IL 60637



Watch video »

October 15-17, 2018

"Organizing Technological Change" with Luis Garicano

This is a course on the interaction between organizational change and technological change. We shall study how organizations change as a result of digitization, changes in the role of managers, and how organizational structure and change mediates productivity growth.

Join us for three stand-alone, interrelated lunch seminars exploring these topics with Professor Luis Garicano.

Luis Garicano is a professor of Economics and Strategy and head of the Center for the Digital Economy at IE Business School. He has previously been a Full Professor of Economics and Strategy at Chicago Booth (where he has remained a visiting professor, teaching in the Hong Kong and London XP programs, ever since he left Booth) and at the London School of Economics, and has been a visiting Professor at MIT and LBS among other institutions. Garicano is a leading researcher on topics such as the impact of technology on economic growth, the organization of economic activity, and the future of work in the knowledge economy. His research has shown that it is the interaction between technology and its implementation, through organizational change, that really matters in inducing productivity and change. His current lines of research also include building the institutions to avoid new economic crisis in the Eurozone. Garicano holds bachelor’s degrees in Economics and Law from Universidad de Valladolid, a Master’s degree in European Economic Studies from the College of Europe in Bruges, and a Master’s degree and a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Chicago. Garicano has been actively involved in policy making. He was recently elected Vice President of ALDE (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe), and he currently heads the area of Economy and Employment for Spain’s Ciudadanos party.

Monday, October 15: 12-1pm
How does organization mediate changes in the structure and level of wages?

This session will study the connection between changes in the nature of tasks, in the organization of work, in the organization of firms and in the structure of incentives

Watch video » 

Tuesday, October 16, 12-1pm
The changing roles of managers in the knowledge economy: managers as translators

This session studies the changing roles of managers as the interface between different "languages" in the organization. We shall explore some theoretical views and study in depth the case of of consulting

Watch video » 

Wednesday, October 17, 12-1pm
How does organization mediate productivity growth and economic growth?

This session will deal with differential technology adoption in firms with different firm sizes and ownership structure, and will seek to explain recent evidence on the increasing gap between productivity growth in different sized firms and different countries. We shall also study resistance to change, and why some organizations refuse to adapt to the evolution of technology.

Watch video »

All seminars take place from 12 to 1 p.m. in Harper Center, Room 104 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave)

October 8, 2018

The People vs. Democracy with Yascha Mounk, Katherine Waldock, and Luigi Zingales

Join the Stigler Center and the Union League Club of Chicago for a conversation with author Yascha Mounk on his latest book, The People vs. Democracy: Why Our Freedom is in Danger and How to Save It. The discussion will be moderated by Capitalisn’t podcast co-hosts Luigi Zingales (University of Chicago) and Katherine Waldock (Georgetown University) and will be recorded and released in a future episode.

Yascha Mounk is a lecturer on government at Harvard University, a senior fellow at New America's Political Reform Program, and host of The Good Fight podcast. Mounk’s research focus is on political theory, comparative politics, and the crisis of liberal democracy. Next to his scholarly work, Yascha writes about politics in Europe and the United States for publications including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Die Zeit and the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, and has appeared on CNN and NPR. He holds a BA and MPhil from Cambridge University, and a PhD from Harvard University.

Katherine Waldock is an assistant professor of finance at the McDonough School of Business and holds a courtesy joint appointment with the Georgetown Law Center. She is also co-host of the Capitalisn’t podcast with Chicago Booth professor Luigi Zingales.

Luigi Zingales is the Robert C. McCormack Distinguished Service Professor of Entrepreneurship and Finance and the Charles M. Harper Faculty Fellow and Director of the Stigler Center at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He launched the Capitalisn't podcast with Katherine Waldock in January 2018.

5:00 p.m. Registration and reception

5:30 p.m. Discussion and Q&A

7:00 p.m. Adjournment and book signing

UNION LEAGUE CLUB OF CHICAGO - 65 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, IL 60604

Watch video »

May 23–24, 2018

Mini-course: "Corporate Political Influence in the United States" with Brian Richter

Corporations attempt to capture the government and to wield influence over policy outcomes.  What channels are available to firms attempting to do so in the United States—and how is this activity regulated and disclosed? Is there too much or too little corporate money in politics? Are politicians infinitely bribable or are there limits?  And what’s the connection between corporate political influence and gerrymandering and corporate social responsibility?

Join us for two stand-alone, interrelated lunch seminars exploring these topics with Professor Brian Richter.

Brian Kelleher Richter is currently visiting the Stigler Center at the University of Chicago’s Booth School from the University of Texas at Austin's McCombs School of Business where he is an Assistant Professor in the Business, Government, and Society Department.  He received his Ph.D. from UCLA’s Anderson School of Management, a Master’s from UCSD’s School of Global Policy and Strategy, and his S.B. from MIT’s Sloan School of Management.  Outside of academia, he’s worked in both the public and the private sector, in the US and abroad.  At UT Austin, he teaches courses on corporate social responsibility and business & politics. 

Wednesday, May 23, 12–1 p.m.
Corporate-Linked Money

Topics addressed include:

  • Is there too much corporate money in politics?
  • How is corporate political activity regulated?
  • What types of corporate-linked money flow into US politics and how do these influence channels work in practice?
    • What are campaign contributions?
      • What is a political action committee (PAC)?
      • What is a personal campaign contribution?
    • What is a “Super PAC”? And what did the Citizens United Supreme Court case actually do?
    • What is lobbying?
  • How do different forms of corporate-linked money in politics actually work in practice?
  • Where else might influence money flow? Are there linkage to corporate philanthropy?

Watch video »

Thursday, May 24, 12–1 p.m.
Alternative Sources of Influence

Topics addressed include:

    • Are politicians infinitely bribable?  What are the limits to corporate political influence beyond regulating money in politics?

    • What is the relationship between corporate social responsibility profiles of firms have anything to do with money in politics?  Why does such a relationship exist?

    • What is gerrymandering, how is it done, and by whom? 

    • How do political districts and gerrymandering matter for firms interested in obtaining beneficial policy outcomes?

    • Why might the Supreme Court’s forthcoming decisions on gerrymandering (in Gil vs Whitford and Benisek v Lamone) potentially matter more for corporate political influence than Citizens United?

    Watch video »

    All seminars take place from 12 to 1 p.m. in Harper Center, Room C25 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave)

    May 14–16, 2018

    Mini-course: "Problems of Legitimacy for Central Banks in Democracies" with Paul Tucker

    Join us for three stand-alone, interrelated lunch seminars with Sir Paul Tucker, Research Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School, Chair of the Systemic Risk Council, and former Deputy Governor of the Bank of England.

    Sir Paul Tucker is a research fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and chair of the Systemic Risk Council. He previously served as deputy governor at the Bank of England and as a member of the G20 Financial Stability Board’s Steering Group, chairing a group on Too Big To Fail. In 2014, Tucker was knighted by Britain for his services to central banking. His other current activities including being as a director at Swiss Re, a leading global re-insurer, and of the Financial Services Volunteers Corps.

    Sir Paul Tucker’s forthcoming book Unelected Power: The Quest for Legitimacy in Central Banking and the Regulatory State will be available for purchase and signing.



    Monday, May 14, 12–1 p.m.

    Constraining Central Banks in Democracies

    Topics addressed will include:

    • The problem of unelected administrative power and (flawed) justifications for it
    • Credible commitment as the key ingredient to constraining administrative power
    • The need for insulation from quotidian politics and the democratic deficit in central banks
    • Why legitimacy matters
    • Tucker’s Principles for Delegation and related implications for antitrust and prudential supervision

    Watch video »

    Tuesday, May 15, 12–1 p.m.
    Applying the Principles for Delegation

    Topics addressed will include:

    • How the Principles fit (or don't) with the constitutional structures and norms of the US, UK, and Germany
    • A new non-delegation doctrine for US
    • The difficulty US has in achieving incentives-values compatibility
    • Examples from utility regulation, and the big problem of securities regulation

    Watch video »

    Wednesday, May 16, 12–1 p.m.
    The Post-Crisis Central Banks

    Topics addressed will include:

    • Is monetary policy independence out of date?
    • Balance sheet policy
    • Central banks as lenders of last resort
    • The role of an ethic of self-restraint

    Watch video »

    All seminars take place from 12 to 1 p.m. in Harper Center, Room 104 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave)

    May 1, 2018

    Radical Markets and the Captured Economy

    Join us for a conversation with authors Brink Lindsey, Steven Teles; Eric Posner and Glen Weyl on their latest books–The Captured Economy: How the Powerful Enrich Themselves, Slow Down Growth, and Increase Inequality; and respectively Radical Markets: Uprooting Capitalism and Democracy for a Just Society. The conversation will be moderated by Georgetown University’s Katherine Waldock.

    Not so long ago, Silicon Valley was America’s pride and joy. Google, Facebook, and Apple represented the best of America—our drive to innovate, to dare, to dream. But the winds have decidedly shifted in the last year or two, as Big Tech’s enormous wealth and power have become apparent. Has Big Tech taken on monpoolistic tendencies, stifling competition and innovation? Are these tech darlings big enough to necessitate increased regulation or perhaps even antitrust action? Is it time to break up Big Tech?

    12:00 p.m. Registration, discussion and Q&A
    1:00p.m. Adjournment and book signing

    Harper Center C25
    5807 S Woodlawn Ave
    Chicago, IL 60637

    Watch Video»

    February 26, 2018

    Fireside Chat: "Financial Regulation and Beyond: An Insider's Perspective" with Sharon Bowen & Guy Rolnik

    Join the Stigler Center for a conversation with Sharon Bowen, former commissioner of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and Booth professor Guy Rolnik, on the challenges and opportunities facing regulators in the financial sector and beyond.

    In June 2017, when Ms. Bowen announced her intent to resign from the CFTC, there were only two commissioners on what is mandated to be a five-member bipartisan board. Lacking a full complement of commissioners since 2014, the CFTC had been “frozen in place while the markets we regulate are moving faster every day,” Bowen explained upon her announcement. “This fact,” she added, “is intolerable to me.”

    Ms. Bowen will offer an insider’s perspective on the progress made to reduce systemic financial risk, the remaining challenges in areas such as cybersecurity and high frequency trading, avoiding regulatory capture, maintaining competitive markets, the future of the Dodd-Frank Act, and the possible implications for regulators, the financial industry, and beyond.

    Sharon Bowen brings more than 35 years of regulatory, securities, and public policy expertise. She joined the Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. Board of Directors in December 2017, and also serves on the boards of certain NYSE U.S. regulated exchanges. Most recently, she served as a Commissioner of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) from 2014 - 2017. During that time, she was a sponsor of the CFTC Market Risk Advisory Committee. Bowen was previously confirmed by the U.S. Senate and appointed by President Obama on February 12, 2010 to serve as Vice Chair of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC). She assumed the role of Acting Chair in March 2012. Prior to her appointment to the CFTC, she was a partner in the New York office of Latham & Watkins LLP. Bowen’s broad and diverse corporate and transactional practice of almost 32 years began in 1982 when she started her career as an associate at Davis Polk & Wardwell. She joined Latham as a senior corporate associate in the summer of 1988 and became a partner January 1991, and continued at Latham & Watkins LLP until 2014. Bowen earned a BA in Economics from the University of Virginia, MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and JD from Northwestern University School of Law.

    Guy Rolnik is a clinical associate professor of strategic management at Booth. For the last 28 years, he has lived and worked in the intersection of business, finance, regulation, politics, and the media. First, as a financial journalist and editor, later as a business entrepreneur and founder of a media company, and in the last decade as a policy entrepreneur—using media as a tool for driving structural reforms in the economy. Rolnik earned a BA in Economics from Tel Aviv University, a Kellogg-Recanati International MBA from the EMBA program at Northwestern University and Tel Aviv University, and an AMP165 from the advanced management program at Harvard Business School.

    All seminars take place from 12-1 pm in Harper Center, Room 104 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave)

    Watch video »

    February 14–15, 2018

    Mini-course: "Fintech and Banking in Europe: A Steady Revolution" with Robert Nicastro

    Join us for two stand-alone, interrelated lunch seminars with Italian banker and investor Roberto Nicastro.

    Roberto Nicastro is an Italian businessman and banker. He has served as chairman of Cassa del Trentino, the “A” rated Italian financial company, since 2015. He is also an angel investor in several fintech and various other startups. From 2015 to 2017, he served as chairman of the 4 ‘Good Banks’, entrusted  by the Bank of Italy to chair, restructure, and sell them. From 2010 to 2015, he served as group general manager of UniCredit Group, responsible for Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), Poland, Austria, Fineco, the group digital agenda, relationship with regulators, and the internal control system.  Previously, he headed CEE, retail banking, and planning. From 2000 to 2015, he was also deputy chairman of Bank Pekao (Poland), board member of HVB (Germany), Bank Austria, Unicredit Bank Russia, Koç Bank (Turkey), and chairman of Zagrebacka Banka (Croatia), Bulbank (Bulgaria), and Zivnostenska Banka (Czech Republic), among others. From 1991 to 1997, he was a senior manager at McKinsey & Co, with expertise in consumer goods, banking and supervision. From 1989 to 1991, he worked as a financial analyst at Salomon Brothers (London) in the M&A/capital markets department. From 1988 to 1989, Nicastro was a guest researcher at the Bocconi University’s Business Management School.

    Wednesday, February 14, 12–1 p.m.

    How Fintech is Transforming Retail Financial Services in Europe

    Topics addressed will include:

    • The digital divide across the continent
    • The unbundling of retail financial services business models
    • Main effects on customers and incumbent players/banks
    • The monetization of data
    • Main examples in retail payments, savings, lending, IT, RegTech
    • The push from regulators in 2018: PSD2 (Payment Services Directives) and GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation)

    Watch video»

    Thursday, February 15, 12–1 p.m.
    Banks' Reaction to Fintech: Strategies, Legacies, 'Coopetition'

    Topics addressed will include:

    • The legacy issue (HR, brick and mortar, customers habits, IT puzzle, internal siloes)
    • Financial markets and short termism as hurdles to digital drive
    • Cost drive
    • Digital transformation
    • Partnering with fintech
    • “Open banking”
    • Fintech venture capital initiatives by banks
    • Size considerations in digital innovation
    • 'Winners and losers'

    Watch video»

    All seminars take place from 12 to 1 p.m. in Harper Center, Room 104 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave)

    November 30, 2017

    Tyler Cowen in Conversation with Luigi Zingales on the "American Dream"

    Have Americans lost the willingness to move, take risks, and adapt to change—key characteristics which have helped us produce a dynamic economy?

    Tyler Cowen, Holbert L. Harris Chair of Economics at George Mason University, will consider these questions and more in this conversation with Luigi Zingales, Faculty Director of the Stigler Center, on Cowen's book The Complacent Class: The Self-Defeating Quest for the American Dream.

    5:00 p.m. Reception
    5:30–7 p.m. Lecture

    Gleacher Center Room 621
    450 North Cityfront Plaza Drive
    Chicago, IL 60611

    Watch Video »

    October 25, 2017

    "Is Western Liberal Democracy in Retreat?" with Ed Luce

    In his last book, The Retreat of Western Liberalism, Luce discusses the weakening of western hegemony and the crisis of liberal democracy―of which Donald Trump and his European counterparts are not the cause, but a terrifying symptom.

    Edward Luce is the Washington columnist and commentator for the Financial Times. He writes a weekly column, FT’s leaders/editorials on American politics and the economy and other articles. Ed has worked for the FT since 1995 as Philippines correspondent, capital markets editor, South Asia bureau chief in New Delhi and Washington bureau chief between 2006 and 2011.

    5:00 p.m. Reception
    5:30–7 p.m. Lecture

    Gleacher Center, Room 621
    450 North Cityfront Plaza Drive
    Chicago, IL 60611

    Watch Video »

    September 26, 2017

    What a Trump America Can Learn From Italy

    What can America learn from Italy’s experience under Berlusconi? And can Italy offer any hope?

    Beppe Severgnini, a columnist for Corriere della Sera and the New York Times, will consider these questions and more in his Stigler Center lecture.

    12–1 p.m.
    Lunch will be served

    Harper Center C25
    5807 S. Woodlawn Ave.
    Chicago, IL 60637

    Watch Video »

    May 24, 25, and 26, 2017

    Mini-Course: "Is Direct Democracy a Solution to Populism?" with John Matsusaka (USC)

    Join us for a series of stand-alone, interrelated lunch seminars with John Matsusaka (Charles F. Sexton Chair in American Enterprise, University of Southern California). 

    In recent years, a surge in populism in many of the western democracies has fueled the rise of political movements that promise to restore power back into the People’s hands. In turn, this led to two of the most unexpected political outcomes of the past year: the decision of Great Britain to leave the European Union, and the election of Trump as the 45th president of the United States. These lectures discuss the possible reasons for the rise of global populism and explores the role of direct democracy—initiatives and referendums—as an alternative to representative democracy. Is the growth of direct democracy part of the problem, or can it be part of the solution?

    Seminars will take place from 12–1 p.m. in Harper Center C05 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave.).

    • Wednesday, May 24: Are the People Losing Control Over the Institutions They Elect? Watch Video »
    • Thursday, May 25: Why Direct Democracy Can Work. Watch Video »
    • Friday, May 26: Can We Use Direct Democracy to Fix Democracy? Watch Video »

    John Matsusaka is Charles F. Sexton Chair in American Enterprise in the the Marshall School of Business, Gould School of Law, and Department of Political Science at the University of Southern California, and Executive Director of the Initiative and Referendum Institute at USC. He received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Chicago, and has held visiting appointments at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, UCLA, Caltech, and the University of Chicago. His research focuses on the financing, governance, and organization of corporations and governments. He has published numerous scholarly articles, served as a consultant for the White House Council of Economic Advisors, and is the author of For the Many or the Few: The Initiative, Public Policy, and American Democracy (University of Chicago Press, 2004). From 2007 to 2013 he served as Vice Dean for Faculty and Academic Affairs in the USC Marshall School of Business.

    April 24 and 25, 2017

    Mini-Course: "Trump and Trade" with Douglas Irwin (Dartmouth)

    Join us for a pair of stand-alone, interrelated lunch seminars with Douglas Irwin (John Sloan Dickey Third Century Professor in the Social Sciences, Dartmouth College).

    Seminars will take place from 12–1 p.m. in Harper Center 104 (5807 S Woodlawn Ave.).

    • Monday, April 24: Are We Losing? Trade Deficits and Global Competition Watch Video »
    • Tuesday, April 25: Bad Deals? Those Disastrous Trade Agreements Watch Video »

    Douglas Irwin is the John Sloan Dickey Third Century Professor in the Social Sciences in the Department of Economics at Dartmouth College. He is author of Free Trade Under Fire (Princeton University Press, fourth edition 2015), Trade Policy Disaster: Lessons from the 1930s (MIT Press, 2012), Peddling Protectionism: Smoot-Hawley and the Great Depression (Princeton University Press, 2011), The Genesis of the GATT (Cambridge University Press, 2008, co-authored with Petros Mavroidis and Alan Sykes), Against the Tide: An Intellectual History of Free Trade (Princeton University Press, 1996), and many articles on trade policy in books and professional journals. He is a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research and has also served on the staff of the President's Council of Economic Advisers and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.

    April 13, 2017

    "The Economics of Investigative Journalism: the Case of French Mediapart" with Edwy Plenel and James Hamilton

    Investigative journalism that holds powerful actors to account and exposes the ways special interest groups influence the rules of the game is an important democratic institution. But is there a viable business model for media outlets that provide this service? Is financial investigative journalism a service that can be produced by the market or is it a public good?

    These questions will be discussed in a special event hosted by the Stigler Center with Edwy Plenel, the Editor-in-Chief of MediaPart and Stanford Professor James T. Hamilton.

    Edwy Plenel is the founder of MediaPart, a startup created in 2006 that disrupted the French news media market with groundbreaking investigative stories. Mediapart has become highly profitable, with a business model that is based solely on subscription fees, not advertising.

    James Hamilton is the Hearst Professor of Communication and the Director of the Journalism Program at Stanford University. He has published many books on media markets and information provision. His most recent book, Democracy’s Detectives: The Economics of Investigative Journalism (Harvard, 2016), focuses on the market for investigative reporting. Through research in the field of computational journalism, he is exploring how the costs of story discovery can be lowered through better use of data and algorithms.

    11:45 a.m.–1:15 p.m.
    Lunch will be served.

    Harper Center C25
    5807 S. Woodlawn Ave.
    Chicago, IL 60637

    Watch Video »

    March 6, 2017

    "Is American Democracy in Trouble?" with David Moss

    Is American democracy in trouble? Professor David Moss will take up this question from an historical perspective, exploring the strengths and weaknesses of the nation’s political system as it has evolved over the past 230-plus years. He will pay particular attention to the nature of political conflict over time, and whether partisan divisions and other political fault lines have become especially dangerous today, as many commentators contend. Ultimately, he will consider whether it’s possible for America’s aging democracy to overcome its many challenges—and if so, how. Over the past several years, Professor Moss has developed a case-method course on the history of American democracy, available to both Harvard undergraduates and business school students, and he recently finished writing a book on the subject called Democracy: A Case Study, which will be published by Harvard University Press in early 2017.

    David Moss is the Paul Whiton Cherington Professor at Harvard Business School, where he teaches in the Business, Government, and the International Economy (BGIE) unit. He earned his B.A. from Cornell University and his Ph.D. from Yale. In 1992-1993, he served as a senior economist at Abt Associates. He joined the Harvard Business School faculty in July 1993.

    4:30 p.m. Reception
    5–6:30 p.m. Lecture

    Harper Center 104
    5807 S. Woodlawn Ave.
    Chicago, IL 60637

    January 9, 10, 11, 2017

    Mini-Course: "Blockchains and the Future of Finance" with David Yermack (NYU)

    Blockchains represent a novel application of cryptography and information technology to age-old problems of financial record-keeping, and they may lead to far-reaching changes in the finance industry. Over the next decade, banks, stock markets, and other intermediaries are expected to shrink as more financial transactions move to peer-to-peer FinTech platforms. This lecture discusses the potential implications of these changes for managers, institutional investors, small shareholders, auditors, and other groups in the financial world.

    David L. Yermack is the Albert Fingerhut Professor of Finance and Business Transformation at New York University Stern School of Business. He serves as Chairman of the Finance Department and Director of the NYU Pollack Center for Law and Business. Professor Yermack teaches joint MBA-Law School courses in Restructuring Firms & Industries and Bitcoin & Cryptocurrencies, as well as PhD research courses in corporate governance, executive compensation, and distress and restructuring.

    Due to the high level of interest, all three mini-course sessions have been moved to Harper Center 104.
    All seminars will take place from 12–1 p.m. in Harper Center 104, 5807 S. Woodlawn Ave., Chicago, IL 60637.

    • Monday, January 9: What Problems Do Blockchain's Solve? Watch Video »
    • Tuesday, January 10: Blockchains and Corporate Finance Watch Video »
    • Wednesday, January 11: Blockchains and Central Bank Digital Currency Watch Video »

    December 5, 6, 8, 2016

    Mini-Course: "Political Economy in China: Capital Markets, Governance, and Growth" with Bernard Y. Yeung (National University of Singapore)

    Join us for a a mini-course of three stand-alone interrelated lunch seminars with Bernard Yeung (NUS).

    Professor Bernard Yeung is the Dean and Stephen Riady Distinguished Professor in Finance and Strategic Management at National University of Singapore (NUS) Business School. Before joining NUS in June 2008, he was the Abraham Krasnoff Professor in Global Business, Economics, and Management at New York University (NYU) Stern School of Business. He has also served as the Director of the NYU China House, the honorary co-chair of the Strategy Department of the Peking University Guanghua School of Management, and Advisory Professor at the East China Normal University. From 1988 to 1999, he taught at the University of Michigan and at the University of Alberta from 1983 to 1988.

    All seminars will take place from 12 p.m. - 1 p.m. in the Harper Center, 5807 S. Woodlawn Ave., Chicago, IL 60637.

    • Monday, December 5 in C25: Anti-Corruption Reforms and Shareholder Valuations: Evidence from China
    • Tuesday, December 6 in C08: the Chinese Growth Model
    • Thursday, December 8 in C25: the Chinese Economy: Moving Forward

    November 30, 2016

    "The Euro" a Conversation with Stiglitz and Brunnermeier, Moderated by Zingales

    Is the euro doomed? Or is it an irreversible step toward a closer political union, which has brought peace and stability to Europe? To discuss these fundamental questions, we will have on the one side Nobel prize winner and author of the book The Euro: How a Common Currency Threatens the Future of Europe, Joseph Stiglitz (Columbia University), and on the other side a rising star in the economics profession and co-author of the book The Euro and the Battle of Ideas, Markus Brunnermeier (Princeton University). Our own Luigi Zingales will moderate the debate.

    12–1:15 p.m.

    Harper Center 104
    5807 S Woodlawn Ave
    Chicago, IL 60637

    Watch Video »

    October 24, 2016

    "Why They Do It: Inside the Mind of the White-Collar Criminal" a Conversation with Eugene Soltes (HBS), Moderated by Nick Epley (Booth)

    Over the past seven years, Eugene Soltes (Harvard Business School) sought to understand why senior executives engage in misconduct. As part of this project, he has extensively interviewed nearly 50 of the most prominent executives convicted of white-collar crimes. Soltes hypothesizes that many of the most well-known cases of executive failure might better be described as failures of managerial intuition rather than failures of reasoning. During the presentation, he will discuss the background of the project and some of his preliminary findings.

    12 p.m. - 1:15 p.m.

    Harper Center C08
    5807 S Woodlawn Ave
    Chicago, IL 60637

    Watch Video »

    October 13, 2016

    "SEC and Revolving Doors: A Conversation with Deutsche Bank Whistleblower Eric Ben-Artzi

    In May 2015, Deutsche Bank agreed to pay a $55 million fine to the Securities and Exchange Commission to settle charges that it inflated the value of its complex derivatives portfolio during the height of the financial crisis. In late August 2016, whistleblower and former Deutsche Bank risk officer Eric Ben-Artzi caused a media sensation when he publicly rejected an $8.25 million award from the SEC due to the agency’s failure to punish Deutsche’s executives. At this event, Eric Ben-Artzi will share his behind-the-scenes stories.

    5 p.m. lecture 
    Reception to follow

    Harper Center C25
    5807 S Woodlawn Ave
    Chicago, IL 60637

    Watch Video »

    July 19, 2016

    "Spaces of the Princes, Spaces of the People: On Machiavelli's Construction of a Political Topography" with Stefano Visentin (University of Urbino Carlo Bo)

    Professor Stefano Visentin from the University of Urbino Carlo Bo presents his research on political space, particularly the relationship between Machiavelli's thought and the development of the modern nation-state.

    4 - 6 p.m.

    Pick Hall 506
    Discussant: Agatha Slupek
    Co-sponsored with the Department of Political Science

    May 3, 2016

    Panel Discussion: "Corporate Governance in the Era of Shareholder Activism"

    Why is shareholder activism so prevalent right now? What systematic changes could improve corporate oversight? What are the options for a dissenting director when he/she is in a minority position on fundamental issues? Join us for a lively discussion as Karla Scherer (Chairman, The Karla Scherer Foundation), Nell Minow (Vice Chair, ValueEdge Advisors), and Paola Sapienza (Professor of Finance, Kellogg School of Management) discuss this topic together with Jeff Gramm (hedge fund advisor and author of Dear Chairman: Boardroom Battles and the Rise of Shareholder Activism).

    4:30 - 5 p.m.

    Harper Center Room 104
    Free and open to the public

    April 19, 2016

    "Work On Demand–Serving Chicago's Underserved" with David Plouffe (Uber)

    Wage stagnation continues to pose a real challenge in today’s global economy. But what if people could work whenever they wanted to and earn extra money whenever they needed it? Enter Uber. Chief Advisor and Board Member David Plouffe heads to the University of Chicago for an exclusive presentation and fireside chat on our changing economy and why more people than ever are seeking flexible work.

    4:30 - 5 p.m.

    Harper Center Room 104
    Free and open to the public

    April 12, 2016

    "Welfare, Competition, and Quality of Government" with Bo Rothstein, Casey Mulligan, and Luigi Zingales

    Is competition the natural evolution of every economic system? Is the best government the smallest government? How does welfare impact the efficiency of an economic system? Bo Rothstein (Oxford), Casey Mulligan (Chicago), and Luigi Zingales (Chicago Booth) will discuss this topic, bringing in different perspectives.

    5 - 5:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room 104
    Free and open to the public

    April 11, 2016

    "How Scandinavian Countries Became Non-Corrupt" with Bo Rothstein (Oxford)

    What recipes do social scientists have to eradicate corruption and transform a country in an advanced democracy? Political scientist Bo Rothstein discusses the lessons he learned from 30 years of research on quality of government and institutions, with particular reference to the Scandinavian historical experience.

    4:30 - 5 p.m.

    Harper Center Room 104
    Free and open to the public

    March 31, 2016

    "Protecting Our Drinking Water" with Robert Bilott (Taft)

    Described in the New York Times as “DuPont’s worst nightmare,” Robert Bilott, a partner at Taft Stettinius & Hollister, took on an environmental lawsuit that changed his career and exposed a decades-long history of chemical contamination of drinking water near a DuPont plant in West Virginia. After his client settled with Dupont over contamination by the ‘unregulated’ chemical PFOA or C8, Bilott decided to push ahead in pursuing the truth and exposing that PFOA is a risk to human health. In 2001 Bilott filed a class action lawsuit, Leach, et al. v E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Co, on behalf of about 70,000 people in six water districts in West Virginia and Ohio that contained high levels of PFOA, leading to an ongoing legal battle with DuPont.

    Bilott discussed the legal, regulatory, political, and scientific challenges of addressing unregulated chemical contaminants in drinking water.

    4:30 - 5 p.m.

    Harper Center Room C25
    Free and open to the public

    March 15, 2016

    Climate Change: Why Journalism Failed with Alan Rusbridger

    Climate change is perhaps the biggest story of our generation. If the planet warms up in line with the majority of informed predictions the likely consequences for the human race will be immense. Yet how often do you read a story about climate change on the front page of your regular newspaper? How often does the subject feature in television bulletins?

    Why is it that journalism has failed to rise to arguably on of the most pressing issue of our times? Is the fault of journalists? Or are we - the apathetic readers - also to blame? Or is it something about the nature of journalism itself which sets it up for failure?

    Alan Rusbridger–after editing the Guardian for 20 years–decided to end his editorship by running a five month campaign to try and get the issue into greater public consciousness. In doing so he broke all the conventional truths about journalism taught in J Schools. But, arguably, he succeeded in bringing about change.

    5 - 5:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room 104
    Free and open to the public

    Watch Video »

    March 3, 2016

    "Big Pharma: The Business of Innovation and Regulation" with Luba Greenwood

    Pharmaceutical companies have come under increasing scrutiny for large increases in drug prices over the past years. Some have blamed investors and M&A for pressuring companies to raise prices. Others have blamed a broken patent and regulatory framework that stymies effective competition.

    In this talk, Luba Greenwood will explore the role of incentives, regulation, investment, and the patent system in driving the business model of modern pharma, and the ultimate impact of this system on patients.

    5 - 5:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room C25
    Free and open to the public

    February 4, 2016

    "Why the news media failed the public before the financial crisis — and why it will fail again" with Dean Starkman

    Dean Starkman, an award-winning journalist and media critic, is a big believer in the power of journalism to correct market failures, hold regulators and political leaders to account, and, even keep Wall Street itself in check. But, he argues, in the years leading up to the financial calamity of 2008, it didn’t, with catastrophic consequences. Why not?

    The professional press provided reams of information about Wall Street and the financial system in the years before the crash — just the wrong kind, he says. For his book, the Watchdog that Didn’t Bark: the Financial Crisis and the Disappearance of Investigative Journalism (Columbia University Press, 2014), Starkman sifted through an ocean of reporting on Wall Street and the financial system to discover the great paradox of the crisis: namely that while the press’s usual sources — insiders and elites — didn’t have the story, plenty of outsiders did. He reflects on the meaning of the crisis and its aftermath for journalism and explores how when it can live up to its irreplaceable role of providing oxygen to the public sphere and safeguarding the public interest against private externalities. Those expecting cheap and easy solutions will be disappointed. Journalism’s fact-gathering resources fell dramatically during and after the crisis, and its future is murky at best. But Starkman believes that while the crisis shook democracy both in the U.S. and around the world, it offers valuable lessons for journalism and the public that relies on it.

    5 - 5:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room C25
    Free and open to the public

    January 26, 2016

    "The US Has a Drug Problem" with Kyle Bass, Hayman Capital Management L.P.

    A small minority of drug companies are abusing the drug patent system in the U.S to sustain patents that contain no meaningful innovations, but serve to maintain their anti-competitive, high-price monopoly to the detriment of Americans suffering from illness. Kyle Bass will share his views on inefficient regulation and how eliminating improperly granted pharmaceutical patents promotes competition and innovation, which ultimately benefits consumers and taxpayers.

    5 - 5:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room 104
    Free and open to the public

    January 5, 2016

    "The Rise of Executive Impunity: How the Justice Department Lost the Will and Ability to Prosecute Top Corporate Officers" with Jesse Eisinger, ProPublica

    Jesse Eisinger will discuss his forthcoming book for Simon & Schuster on the Department of Justice. The book traces changes in the Justice Department culture, the law, policies, and practices—primarily from the Enron-era cases to today—to understand why the Justice Department has difficulty prosecuting top executives of the largest companies in the United States.

    Eisinger is a senior reporter at ProPublica. He writes a regular column for the New York Times’s Dealbook section. (He is currently on book leave.) In April 2011, he shared the Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting for a series of stories on questionable Wall Street practices that helped make the 2008 financial crisis the worst since the Great Depression. He won the 2015 Gerald Loeb Award for commentary. He has twice been a finalist for the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting. His work has appeared in the New York Times, the Atlantic, the Washington Post, the Baffler and on NPR and "This American Life." Before joining ProPublica, he was the Wall Street editor of Conde Nast Portfolio and a columnist for the Wall Street Journal, covering markets and finance.

    5 - 5:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room C25
    Free and open to the public

    December 2, 2015

    "Why Banks Still "Own the Place"" with Professor Anat Admati (Stanford GSB)

    Despite an enormously harmful financial crisis and despite rhetoric from politicians and regulators about the need to control Wall Street, the banking industry is still dangerous and distorted. What is wrong with banking and why is the industry so successful in virtually maintaining a bad status quo? This talk will describe the forces that explain why and how the banking industry maintains its economic and political power in the US and elsewhere. Professor Admati will discuss the basic economics of banking, trends in recent decades, and the unique governance issues that pervade the institutions within and around banking. Among the reasons for the success of the industry is the pervasive myth that banks are “special,” and the spin and narratives that maintain this myth and which have been used to justify the excessive privileges banks enjoy. Professor Admati will assess the state of financial regulations, calls for “breaking up the banks,” risk tax, and other approaches.

    5 - 5:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room C25
    Free and open to the public

    November 20 and 21, 2015

    Crisis in the Economic Theory of the Firm

    Milton Friedman famously wrote that the only social responsibility of business is to increase its profits. Friedman's result is based, among others, on the assumption that the rules of the game are fixed: firms, in their profit maximizing behavior, cannot modify the rules to their own advantage. Ironically, the year after Friedman published “The social responsibility of business,” George Stigler, Friedman’s colleague at the University of Chicago, published “The Theory of Economic Regulation,” perhaps the most influential piece ever written on the problem of regulatory capture. A central thesis of this paper is that, as a rule, regulation is "acquired by the industry and is designed and operated primarily for its benefit.” Hence, firms are not players in a game whose rules are exogenously set (as in Friedman’s view), but players that successfully lobby to modify the rules of the game to their advantage. From a normative point of view, in this world what should a firm maximize? Is Friedman's rule still valid, or should it be modified? If so, how? This is the topic we want to discuss in this meeting.

    Co-organized with Harvard Business School

    Harvard Business School
    See schedule for more details.

    November 11, 2015

    Thin Political Markets: A talk by Professor Karthik Ramanna

    “Thin political markets” are the processes through which some of the most complex and critical institutions of our capitalist system are determined—e.g., our accounting-standards infrastructure; rules for bank-capital adequacy; actuarial standards; and auditing practice. In thin political markets, corporate special interests are largely unopposed because of their own expertise and the general public’s low awareness of the issues. This enables special interests to structure the “rules of the game” in self-serving ways. On one level, this behavior embodies the capitalist spirit articulated by Milton Friedman: “The social responsibility of business is to increase its profits.” But the ethics of profit-seeking behavior are premised on the logic of competition and, as this session will demonstrate, this logic breaks down in thin political markets. The result is a structural flaw in the determination of critical institutions of the capitalist system, which, if ignored, can undermine the legitimacy of the system. Professor Ramanna will close with some ideas on how to fix the problem.

    5 - 5:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room 104

    October 12, 2015

    LATAM event: Fireside Chat with Mauro Cunha

    A fireside chat with Mauro Cunha (CEO, AMEC) on the topic of "Asset Management and Corporate Governance in Brazil: landscape, opportunities and challenges. Mediated by Professor Luigi Zingales.

    7 - 8:30 p.m.

    Gleacher Center, Room 100
    Exclusively for LABG members

    October 7, 2015

    How Politics Impacts Financial Markets: A talk by Professor Randall Morck

    The George Stigler Center at Chicago Booth presents the first in a new series of talks aimed at MBA students and the entire University of Chicago community. Professor Randall Morck of the Alberta School of Business will talk about his research on the influence of politics on financial markets.

    6 p.m.

    Harper Center Room C25
    Free and open to the public

    April 10, 2015

    The Next Frontier of Climate Change: State and Local Action in Chicago

    View Welcome and Introductory Remarks »

    • Robert Brennan, Vice President of Strategic Partnerships, The New Republic
    • Michael Quigley, Member, U.S. House of Representatives (D-IL 5th)

    View Headline Interview: EPA's Gina McCarthy »

    Gina McCarthy, Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency interviewed by Jeffrey Ball, Scholar-in-Residence, Stanford University's Steyer-Taylor Center for Energy Policy and Finance, and Contributor, The New Republic

    View City Approaches to Confronting Climate Change »

    • Emma Berndt, Executive Director, Urban Energy and Sustainability Lab, University of Chicago
    • Katherine Gajewski, Chief Sustainability Officer, City of Philadelphia
    • Amy Francetic, Chief Executive Officer, Clean Energy Trust
    • Gabriel Pacyniak, Climate Change Mitigation Program Manger, Georgetown Climate Center
    • Moderator: Jeffrey Ball, Scholar-in-Residence, Stanford University's Steyer-Taylor Center for Energy Policy and Finance, and Contributor, The New Republic

    View State Efforts to Implement Climate Legislation »

    • Doug Scott, Former ICC Chair and IEPA Head, Vice President, Strategic Initiatives, Great Plains Institute
    • Michael Polsky, President and CEO, Invenergy
    • Moderator: Michael Greenstone, Director, Energy Policy Institute at Chicago

    Location: University of Chicago

    November 13, 2014

    The Ninth B. Peter Pashigian Memorial Lecture

    Introductory Remarks: Robert Topel
    Featuring: Professor Kevin Murphy “Competition, Negotiated Discounts and Contracts that Reference Rivals”

    View the lecture »

    3:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room 06

    October 15, 2014

    A Conversation with Peter Thiel, Cofounder of PayPal

    Peter shares highlights from his new book, Zero to One

    Co-sponsored with the Polsky Center

    View coverage »

    5 - 6:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room 104

    May 9, 2013

    Energy Policy Workshop with Epic, Chicago Booth

    12 - 1:15 p.m.

    Booth School of Business Room C02

    April 25, 2013

    Spring Energy Forum: Meghan Busse, Northwestern University: "Did Cash for Clunkers Deliver?"

    Dr. Meghan Busse at Northwestern University focuses her research on market structure and competition, with particular interest in pricing and price discrimination. Her areas of current interest are energy economics and the U.S. automobile industry; her study of the auto industry is supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation.

    She will speak on the question "Did Cash for Clunkers Deliver? The Consumer Effects of the Car Allowance Rebate System."

    12 - 1:15 p.m.

    Booth School of Business Room C02

    April 12, 2013

    The Ronald Coase Institute & The Stigler Center for the Study of the Economy and the State (PDF)

    Round-table Discussion:

    The Role that Scholarly Ideas Have Played in Influencing Policy

    December 6, 2012

    The Energy Policy Series: Session Four

    Vertical Commitments and the Price Effects of Mergers: Evidence from Electricity Markets

    Erin Mansur, Datmouth College

    12 - 1:15 p.m.

    Harper Center Room C02

    November 8, 2012

    The Energy Policy Series: Session Three

    Cynthia Wu, Chicago Booth
    Risk Premia on Crude Oil Futures Prices

    12 - 1:15 p.m.

    Harper Center Room C02

    October 29, 2012

    The Eighth B. Peter Pashigian Memorial Lecture

    Introductory Remarks: Robert Topel
    Featuring: Professors Jesse Shapiro and Matt Gentzkow
    The Media and the State: Historical Evidence from U.S. Newspapers

    3:30 p.m.

    Harper Center Room 104

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