2019 Nobel Prize winners: Economic sciences

Michael Kremer, Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo devised an experimental approach to development economics two decades ago that transformed the discipline. On October 14 the three economists won the 2019 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences.

“The Laureates’ research findings — and those of the researchers following in their footsteps — have dramatically improved our ability to fight poverty in practice,” the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said in a statement.

Kremer is a professor at Harvard University. Banerjee and Duflo, both professors at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, were born in India and France, respectively.

Graphic listing three American winners of 2019 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (State Dept./D. Thompson)Kremer, Banerjee and Duflo’s approach involves breaking poverty into components such as low education or poor child health and developing precise experiments to understand each component’s impact on affected populations. As a direct result of one such study, more than 5 million Indian children have received successful remedial tutoring in schools.

The Prize in Economic Sciences was established in 1968 by Sweden’s central bank, in memory of Alfred Nobel, founder of the Nobel Prizes.

Americans also won 2019 Nobel Prizes in Chemistry, Physics and Medicine.