Leeson Named to Duncan Black Professorship

Leeson Named to Duncan Black Professorship

Peter Leeson, a faculty member within the Department of Economics, has been named the new Duncan Black Professor of Economics and Law. 

The professorship was created by Gordon Tullock, professor emeritus of Mason’s Department of Economics and School of Law. Tullock was the coauthor, with Nobel Laureate James Buchanan, of The Calculus of Consent (1962), and is considered one of the pioneers in the field of public choice. Charles Rowley previously held the Duncan Black professorship from 2000 until his death in August 2013. 

Duncan Black’s writings, from the 1940s and 1950s, helped to pioneer what would later become the field of public choice, which uses the analytical tools of economics to study behavior in non-market environments such as politics.

Peter Leeson has been a part of the Mason faculty since 2007, when he became the BB&T Professor for the Study of Capitalism at the Mercatus Center.  He has also served as a Visiting Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago’s Becker Center on Chicago Price Theory and as the North American editor of the journal Public Choice. He received his PhD from George Mason University, was a visiting fellow at Harvard University, and the F.A. Hayek Fellow at the London School of Economics.

Leeson’s recent book, Anarchy Unbound: Why Self-Governance Works Better than You Think (Cambridge University Press, 2014), applies the economics of non-market decision-making to stateless societies and explores the robustness of self-governance. 

"I am delighted that Professor Leeson has accepted Gordon's offer of the Duncan Black Chair," remarked Daniel Houser, chair, Department of Economics. "Leeson is exceptionally qualified for this chair, not least because of the leading editorial responsibilities he holds at Public Choice, a scholarly publication founded by Gordon himself."

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