Robert W. Fogel


Robert W. Fogel

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Robert W. Fogel
The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel 1993

Born: 1 July 1927, New York, NY, USA

Died: 11 June 2013, Oak Lawn, IL, USA

Affiliation at the time of the award: University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA

Prize motivation: “for having renewed research in economic history by applying economic theory and quantitative methods in order to explain economic and institutional change”

Prize share: 1/2


Robert Fogel was born in New York, USA. He was educated at Cornell University, Columbia University and John Hopkins University, receiving a Ph.D. from the latter in 1963. He taught at the University of Chicago from 1964 and was a visiting professor at the University of Rochester 1968-75. During this time he completed some of his most important works. He married Enid Cassandra Morgan in 1949 and had two children.


Robert Fogel first attention in the early 1960s with his statistical analysis of the impact of railroads on the 19th century American development. Contrary to the thinking of the time, he argued that the building of railroads in the US had contributed far less than had been believed to the overall growth of the economy. Another work of importance, that aroused great attention and controversy, was his work on slavery as an institution and its role in the economics development of the United States.

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