The University Record, November 13, 1995

Weitzman to give Woytinsky Lecture

Martin L. Weitzman of Harvard University's Department of Economics will deliver the Woytinsky Lecture at 4 p.m. Friday (Nov. 17) in Room 201, Lorch Hall.

Weitzman, who uses learning from recombinant genetics literature to illuminate recent inquiries into the sources of economic growth, will present his paper "Recombinant Growth."

Weitzman, who also has served on the faculty at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Yale University, is a leading theorist in the area of environmental and natural resources economics, and comparative systems. In his best-selling book The Share Economy (1984), he proposed a simple but novel approach to reducing business cycle unemployment through a form of profit-sharing with employees.

His recent work has bridged the natural sciences and economics, including application of biogenetics and graph theory to the economics of species diversity.

Born in Russia in 1885, Wladimir Savelievich Woytinsky was active in the underground movement against the Tsar and was exiled to Siberia in 1908. During his exile, he wrote economic and political tracts and explored an uncharted Siberian river. He was a part of Lenin's inner circle but escaped to Georgia, and later Germany, when Lenin turned against him. While in Germany, he wrote a number of books, including an economics book titled The United States of Europe.

After emigrating with his wife, Emma, to the United States in 1933, he became one of the architects of the Social Security system and was the principal economist of the Social Security Board, where he served until 1947. He wrote two books with his wife, World Population and Production (1953) and World Commerce and Government (1955). His autobiography, Stormy Passage, was published in 1961.

The Woytinsky Award, created by his wife in 1964, honors his lifetime of creativity and ethical activism.

For more information, call the Department of Economics, 764-2355.