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Chairman Edward P. Lazear Member Donald B. Marron

Biography of Dr. Edward P. Lazear

Edward P. Lazear was confirmed by the Senate on February 17 and sworn in as Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers on Monday, February 27, 2006.  Before coming to the Council of Economic Advisers, he was a member of President Bush’s Advisory Panel on Tax Reform.

Lazear is on leave of absence from Stanford University where he is the Jack Steele Parker Professor of Human Resources Management and Economics (1995) and the Morris Arnold Cox Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution.  He taught previously at the University of Chicago’s Graduate School of Business.  He is also an elected fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2000), the Econometric Society, and the Society of Labor Economists.  He is on leave as a research associate of the National  Bureau of Economic Research and was a member of the National Academy of Sciences Board on Testing and Assessment.   Lazear was the first vice-president and president of the Society of Labor Economists, as well as the founding editor of the Journal of Labor Economics and founder of two companies.

Lazear developed research and ideas that became the seminal work in the area of “personnel economics,” a field that married economics and statistics to organizational behavior.  He has written or edited nine books.

Among his more than one hundred published papers, the following are of special note:  “Speeding, Terrorism, and Teaching to the Test”  Quarterly Journal of Economics (2006); “The Peter Principle: A Theory of Decline,” Journal of Political Economy (2004); “Economic Imperialism,” for the millennium issue of the Quarterly Journal of Economics (2000); “Culture and Language,” Journal of Political Economy (12/99); “Educational Production,” Quarterly Journal of Economics (2001); “Performance, Pay and Productivity,” American Economic Review (12/00); “Peer Pressure and Partnerships,” with Eugene Kane, Journal of Political Economy (8/92); “Labor Economics and the Psychology of Organization,” Journal of Economic Perspectives (Spring 1991); “Job Security Provisions and Employment,” Quarterly Journal of Economics (8/90); “Pay Equality and Industrial Politics,” Journal of Political Economy (6/89); “Salaries and Piece Rates,” Journal of Business (7/86); “Retail Pricing and Clearance Sales,” American Economic Review (3/86); “Rank-Order Tournaments as Optimum Labor Contracts,” with Sherwin Rosen, Journal of Political Economy (10/81); “Why is There Mandatory  Retirement?”  Journal of  Political Economy (12/79); “Personnel Economics: Past Lessons and Future Direction,” Presidential Address to the Society of Labor Economists, Journal of Labor Economics (1999); and “Globalization and the Market for Teammates,”; Frank Paish Memorial Lecture to the Royal Economic Society, Warwick, England, Economic Journal (1999).

Lazear’s many academic prizes and awards include the 1998 Leo Melamed Biennial Prize for outstanding research, the 2003 Adam Smith Prize from the European Association of Labor Economists, the IZA Prize in Labor Economics from the Institute for the Study of Labor, Bonn, the Distinguished Teaching Award from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business in 1994, and the Distinguished Service Award from Stanford University in 2002.   He has an honorary doctorate from Albertson College of Idaho and delivered the 2002 UCLA Commencement Address.

Lazear has advised many governments throughout the world including Russia, Romania, Republic of Georgia and Ukraine and recently was a member of Governor Schwarzenegger’s Council of Economic Advisers.

Born in 1948, Professor Lazear grew up in Los Altos, California.  He received his A.B. and A. M. degrees from the University of California at Los Angeles and his Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University.  He is married and has one daughter.

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