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It's Nobel Time: Economics

Today's winners work on a resonant problem: What happens when the jobs that are available aren't the right jobs for the unemployed.


Today marks the announcement of the last Nobel Prize, inexplicably given in a different week from the rest of the prizes, and after the climax of the Peace Prize. (It's because it wasn't one of the original prizes dictated by Alfred Nobel.) Today's winners in Economics are Peter A. Diamond, Dale T. Mortensen, and Christopher A Pissarides. The Nobel website, amusingly, could only find a photo of Pissarides.

These three researchers work on the problem on unmatched supply and demand in markets, usually the labor market. In other words, sometimes in a given market supply and demand aren't zero sum. This is a problem that has particular resonance this year as unemployment remains high: in many areas there are both many jobs and many job openings, but the unemployed people are not the right people for the available jobs. It's a theory that, according to The New York Times, is being used to help design a new, alternative unemployment system.

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