Northwestern Prof Shares Nobel Prize for Jobless Research

A Northwestern University professor of economics, Dale Mortensen, is among a trio who won the Nobel Prize in Economics Monday morning, for research on disparities in a marketplace – namely, why jobs remain unfilled even when unemployment is high.

According to his bio, Mortensen focuses on labor economics at Northwestern, where he has been teaching since 1965. He won the $1.5 million prize along with Federal Reserve Board nominee Peter Diamond of MIT and Christopher Pissarides of the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Mortesen is on a visiting professorship right now at the University of Aarhus in Denmark, the Associated Press reported in a story about the prize:

“The laureates’ models help us understand the ways in which unemployment, job vacancies and wages are affected by regulation and economic policy,” the citation said.

Their work resulted in the so-called Diamond-Mortensen-Pissarides model, a frequently used tool to estimate how unemployment benefits, interest rates, the efficiency of employment agencies and other factors can affect the labor market.

“One conclusion is that more generous unemployment benefits give rise to higher unemployment and longer search times,” the academy said.

A picture of Mortensen and a little more about the prize are on the WBEZ site.

If you’re out of work, I wonder what you think about the prize – and their research?

One Reply to “Northwestern Prof Shares Nobel Prize for Jobless Research”

  1. I have not read the research but it would stand to reason that without unemployment benefits or extended benefits that some people would find some kind of work faster to pay the bills, yet there certainly are unwanted consequences for employers and employees who take time, money, and efforts to seal a relationship that will be short lived when the new worker finds better work (more aligned with his/her career and last job held) which may take the time that unemployment benefits can make possible. Seriously looking for higher responsibility jobs is a job that not only takes a lot of the seekers time but also seems to take longer and longer on the part of hiring companies who are asking for so much more of their applicants. All these issues must also be married with quality of life indicators.

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