Joseph Stiglitz, Clark Medalist 1979
Citation on the Occasion of the Presentation of the Medal
The terms of the John Bates Clark medal call for its award every second year "to that American economist under the age of forty who is adjudged to have made a significant contribution to economic thought and knowledge." That would seem to rule out Joseph Stiglitz, except that we interpret the phrase "a significant contribution" to signify a distant lower bound. Stiglitz is beyond compare among younger economists for the range and variety of his theoretical achievements, as well as for their vigor and their liveliness. From growth and capital to the economics of discrimination, from public finance to corporate finance, from information to uncertainty, from competitive equilibrium with exhaustible resources to monopolistic competition and product diversity, contemporary economic theory is crisscrossed with his footprints. In confidence that the trail still has a long long way to wind, we award the John Bates Clark medal to Joseph E. Stiglitz.