Telephone interview with Leonid Hurwicz and his wife, Evelyn Hurwicz, recorded immediately following the announcement of the 2007 Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, 15 October 2007. The interviewer is Adam Smith, Editor-in-Chief of Nobelprize.org.
[Evelyn Hurwicz] – Hello.
[Adam Smith] – Good morning, I’m sorry to call so early. This is Adam Smith from the Nobel Foundation’s website in Stockholm.
[EH] – Yes.
[AS] – Would it be possible to speak to Leonid Hurwicz please?
[EH] – Yes, just a moment.
[Leonid Hurwicz] – Hello.
[AS] – Good morning, Professor Hurwicz, this is Adam Smith …
[LH] – Hello?
[EH] – He’s hard of hearing.
[AS] – Oh, I am sorry, I’ll speak louder. Can you hear me now OK?
[EH] – Yes.
[AS] – Thank you. My name is Adam Smith, which I know is a strange name for …
[AS] – …and I am calling from the Nobel Foundation website in Stockholm.
[EH] – Yes.
[AS] – And we have a tradition of recording very brief interviews with new laureates as soon as the news is announced. So I’m ringing to congratulate Professor Hurwicz, and just to ask a couple of quick questions, if I may.
[EH] – All right.
[AS] – Thank you. So we understand that you are now the oldest ever Laureate.
[EH] – The oldest winner?
[AS] – The oldest ever winner, yes.
[EH] – Oh.
[AS] – In the entire history of the Prize.
[EH] – Leo …
[LH] – Yeah.
[EH] – …you are the oldest winner of the Prize, Nobel Prize in Economics.
[LH] – The oldest, ah-ha. OK, you better listen Evelyn.
[EH] – No, he wants your remark about it. Are you glad you lived that long?
[EH and LH laugh]
[AS] – And the mechanism design theory that you developed, Professor Hurwicz, has been used in so many applications now. Is there one particular application that you are most pleased about?
[LH] – Well, I’m particularly pleased about welfare economics applications.
[AS] – It has brought good to many, many people.
[EH] – Right.
[AS] – OK, it’s been delightful to speak to you. Thank you very much indeed.
[EH] – Thank you, we’re very pleased.
[AS] – And again, my congratulations.
[LH] – Yeah, I’m very pleased and I hope that others who deserve it also got it.
[AS] – Bye, bye.
[EH] – Bye, bye.
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Their work and discoveries range from the formation of black holes and genetic scissors to efforts to combat hunger and develop new auction formats.
See them all presented here.