Who was the first woman to win the Nobel Prize in economics?

March 23, 2019


The women in economics video series “highlights the ground-breaking and inspiring work of female economists - not only to recognize the important work they’ve done but to also share their inspirational journeys.” Rebeca Gomez Betancourt - Societies for the History of Economics


The first 5 minute video is about Elinor Ostrom the first (and only!) woman to have won the Nobel Prize in economics. Ostrom is best known for her work on the tragedy of the commons. A typical example involves wild tuna. No one owns the tuna in the ocean, so anyone is free to fish out as much as they want. This creates an incentive to quickly fish out as much of the tuna as possible, leading to a rapid decrease in the tuna supply. By doing on-the-ground fieldwork, Ostrom saw that this model does not always play out in real communities. She discovered that local group norms can effectively regulate the consumption of common resources.


The video is available on the ‘Marginal Revolution University’ website at:  https://learn.mruniversity.com/women-economics-series/


Other great female economists to be featured in this series will include Janet Yellen, Anna Schwartz, and Joan Robinson.

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