Skip to content


Is economics still relevant?

A conversation with Nobel Laureate Bengt Holmström

Add to calendar 2024-03-21 17:00 2024-03-21 18:30 Europe/Rome Is economics still relevant? Elinor Ostrom Room Buontalenti - Casino Mediceo YYYY-MM-DD


21 March 2024

17:00 - 18:30 CET


Elinor Ostrom Room

Buontalenti - Casino Mediceo

We welcome Bengt Holmström, Nobel Prize-winning economist, Emeritus Professor at MIT and Adjunct Professor at the Florence School of Transnational Governance, to engage in a discussion on whether economics is still relevant today.

This question will be explored through the lens of four important analytical and policy issues. Two are foundational for economics: Do we know how to measure? And do we understand behaviour so as to be able to do analysis and policy? The other two relate to core 21st century concerns: Does economics understand and knows how to manage the commons? And does it know what to do with the platform economy built on the internet?

With the participation a panel of fellows and students from the EUI community as well as the wider audience, the event will serve as an occasion to delve into these questions through focused sessions addressing these topics. 

The event will take place in hybrid format at the STG premises in Palazzo Buontalenti. All are welcome to attend. Please register, indicating whether you intend to attend online or in person. Please note that online viewers will not be able to participate in the Q&A.

Bengt Holmström is the Paul A. Samuelson Professor of Economics, Emeritus, at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Before joining MIT he was the Edwin J. Beinecke Professor of Management at Yale University’s School of Management and associate professor at the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. In 2016, Holmström was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize (jointly with Oliver Hart) for his research on contract theory. Together with Hart, he laid the foundations of a field that has come to influence almost all areas of economics. His models of incentives and contracting, especially as applied to the theory of the firm, to corporate governance and to liquidity problems in financial markets, are notable for their theoretical elegance and practical insights. His recent research on the financial crisis 2008-09 has strongly influenced current views of the causes of the crises and more generally, the role of debt in the financial system. Holmström is a former board member of the Nokia Corporation, the Finnish Business and Policy Forum EVA, and Aalto University. He currently serves on several academic advisory boards, including Barcelona Graduate School of Economics, Toulouse School of Economics and the Luohan Academy in China.

Go back to top of the page