Events in the Economics Department

Economics Community Forums

Economics Community Forums aim to inform the greater community inside and outside George Mason University about the work and achievements of the Economics Department, and provide them with an opportunity to become involved. These forums address important economic issues of our time.  Distinguished speakers of our past forums have been Professor Lawrence White discussing “Central Banking and the Sovereign Debt Crisis,” Professor Tyler Cowen discussing “What Has Gone Wrong With Europe?,” Professor Garett Jones discussing “Three Hard Solutions to America’s Debt Problem,” Professor Don Boudreaux discussing “The Fate of Middle-Class Living Standards: 1975-2012,” and lastly, Professor Alex Tabarrok discussing Launching the Innovation Renaissance.”


The Public Choice Seminar Series

The Public Choice Seminar Series, sponsored by the Center for Study of Public Choice, has now been held on a weekly basis for over 30 years. The seminars, held on Wednesdays from 4 pm – 5:15 pm in Carow Hall during the fall and spring semesters, have continued to grow in popularity. Scholars from near and far are invited to share their current work in a formal lecture setting, followed by a rigorous question and answer session with students and faculty. An informal reception following the seminar provides an excellent opportunity for seminar participants to continue to share ideas with the presenter. Presenters for the spring semester have included scholars from American University; George Washington University; the World Bank; Stanford University; the University of Kansas; and the University of York, England. Upcoming presenters will include scholars from Queens College, CUNY; Yale University; Brown University; Notre Dame University; the University of Maryland; and Harvard University.

All are welcome! Please check the Center for Study of Public Choice website at

for a listing of speakers and to download their papers.


The Workshop in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics

The Workshop in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) offers students an opportunity to listen to visiting scholars from all over the world discuss a range of topics within the social sciences.   Most recently, we have had the privilege of hosting Casey Mulligan from University of Chicago, Andy Morriss from University of Alabama, Bart Wilson from Chapman University, Kevin Vallier from Bowling Green State University, and a few other scholars presenting on interesting academic topics.  Led by Dr. Pete Boettke, the PPE Workshop is a weekly event that draws students and faculty from across George Mason University. Please stop by and experience the intellectually invigorating atmosphere that the PPE Workshop has to offer. For more information about future PPE events, please visit this link:




ICES-GMU Workshop on Internationalization and Competitiveness

From Personal to Impersonal Exchange – policy and measurement of internationalization and competitiveness

Organized byE. Ullberg, PhD, Visiting Senior Research Scholar and Visiting Assistant Professor


What are the effects of internationalization on competitiveness/performance and what measurements inform policy? The two-day workshop, held on March 1-2 at Mason, had a  goal to integrate novel perspectives on important problems identified during and after the workshop, by having an interdisciplinary and international focus on broad problems, relevant to scientists in diverse fields, which would also inform follow-on research proposals by participating researchers. Seventeen speakers from the US and Europe were invited to discuss at this NSF funded workshop.

International exchange has been a key driver of economic development throughout human history, in turn driven by institutional development. The causal relationship between internationalization – the process by which exchange in ideas, goods and services is extended beyond a personal social exchange to an extended order of impersonal market exchange – and competitiveness or performance – the efficient use and invention of new resources and productivity enhancing ideas (technology) and innovation of products and services – is not very well understood in terms of the dynamic mechanisms that are at play in this complex relationship. A strong theoretical basis for a positive economic analysis and measurement useful to inform policy appears to be lacking.

At this workshop, the discussions were organized around three themes: economics, higher education, and strategic and economic collaboration. A fourth theme, culture, was dropped in the end due to participant cancellations. The results are posted on a special website hosted by SSRN. Two books will be published by Springer, Inc., and edited by E. Ullberg, with selected proceedings from each workshop. The Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization (JEBO) will publish a special issue featuring the best articles from both workshops.

A follow-up workshop will be organized in Stockholm, on October 3-4 (preliminary. date), funded by STINT, the Swedish Foundation for Internationalization of Research and Higher Education.
Additional themes that may be featured during the second workshop, tentatively include the strategy of countries, universities, and businesses in higher education; technology (ICT) and higher education; business and the education challenges of SMEs, and possibly culture.