EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

Alberto Alesina (1957-2020): Man, Researcher, Professor of Economics, Popularizer

Andrea Vindigni ()
Additional contact information
Andrea Vindigni: University of Genova

No 16486, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)

Abstract: This paper offers an overview of Alberto Alesina's life and of his scholarly work (§ 1 and 2). It will be argued, that Alberto would have entirely deserved the award of the Nobel Prize for Economic Science, except only for his premature passing away. His foundational contribution was the creation, and the development of modern political economy since the mid 1980s (§ 3). This is a highly eclectic discipline at the cross-road of economics and political science. I will briefly attempt to explain what political economy is mainly about, and what political economy is nowadays understood to mean: its basic assumptions, its methodology, its goals, its main relations with modern economics (§ 4). I will then focus on the general introduction (§ 5), and the analytical discussion (§ 5.1) of one of Alberto's most important and impactful contributions: his 1994 work with Dani Rodrik on redistributive politics and economic growth. In my opinion, this is not only one of the many path-breaking and extremely impactful contributions of Alberto, but it best illustrates his scholarly traits and his research agenda. This paper has indeed influenced a large subsequent body of literature; I will mention a few highly celebrated among such contributions (§ 5.2). I will then very briefly discuss a few other relatively early works of Alberto, that have also contributed to the foundation and to the establishment of modern political economy (§ 6). These early works could have been part of a hard core of contributions, potentially more than justifying the assignment of the Nobel Prize in Economics to Alberto Alesina. Finally, I will briefly discuss some of his late work (§ 7), as well as my own personal relation with Alberto (§ 8), a truly unique human being, and master of all the Italian economists (and of many other social scientists). Some acknowledgments (§ 9), and a short but essential bibliography (§ 10) conclude this paper.

Keywords: redistribution; political economy; government; public debt; inequality; economic growth; culture (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O11 O43 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 38 pages
Date: 2023-09
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-gro, nep-his, nep-hpe and nep-pke
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations:

Downloads: (external link)
https://docs.iza.org/dp16486.pdf (application/pdf)

Related works:
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:iza:izadps:dp16486

Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
IZA, Margard Ody, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA) IZA, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany. Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Holger Hinte ().

 
Page updated 2024-04-15
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp16486