Two Haas faculty, Oliver Williamson and John Harsanyi, and three Economics faculty have been recognized for their work with the Nobel Prize in Economic Science.

Oliver Williamson (1932–2020)

2009 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences

Oliver E. Williamson was a pioneer in the multi-disciplinary field of transaction cost economics, and one of the world’s most cited economists. Williamson was chosen for the prize “for his analysis of economic governance, especially the boundaries of the firm.” He shared the 2009 prize with Elinor Ostrom, a professor of political science and of public and environmental affairs at Indiana University in Bloomington.

Williams was the Edgar F. Kaiser Professor Emeritus at the Haas School of Business and Professor Emeritus of Economics and Law at the University of California, Berkeley.

Read Oliver Williamson’s obituary in our newsroom.
See Oliver Williamson’s work on Google Scholar.

Books by Oliver Williamson
  • The Mechanisms of Governance
  • Markets and Hierarchies: Analysis and Antitrust Implications
  • The Economic Institutions of Capitalism: Firms, Markets, Relational Contracting
Books inspired by Williamson’s work
  • Firms, Markets and Hierarchies: The Transaction Cost Economics Perspective, by Glenn R. Carroll and David J. Teece

John Harsanyi (1920–2000)

1994 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences

Professor John Harsanyi received the 1994 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences from King Carl Gustav of Sweden.

Haas economist John Harsanyi shared the 1994 Nobel Prize in economics with John Nash, Princeton, and Reinhard Selten, Bonn-Germany, for their contributions to game theory. Harsanyi taught at the Haas School from 1964-1990.

Harsanyi expressed hope that game theory would help private and public institutions make better decisions. In the long run, he explained, better decision making will lead to a higher standard of living and more peaceful and more cooperative political systems.

Books by John Harsanyi
  • Essays on Ethics, Social Behaviour and Scientific Explanation
  • Rational Behaviour and Bargaining Equilibrium in Games and Social Situations
  • A General Theory of Equilibrium Selection in Games
Books inspired by Harsanyi’s work
  • Rational Interaction: Essays in Honor of John C. Harsanyi, by Reinhard Selten
  • Game Theory, Experience, Rationality: Foundations of Social Sciences, Economics and Ethics in Honor of John C. Harsanyi, by W. Leinfellner and Eckehart Köhler

UC Berkeley’s Nobel Prize-Winning Economists

George Akerlof


Daniel McFadden


Gerard Debreu

1983 Nobel Laureate

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