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Title: Creating Skills to Promote Social Opportunity and Reduce Poverty
Originating Office: IAS
Speaker: Heckman, James J
Issue Date: 17-Nov-2015
Event Date: 17-Nov-2015
Group/Series/Folder: Record Group 8.15 - Institute for Advanced Study
Series 3 - Audio-visual Materials
Location: 8.15:3 EF
Notes: IAS Nobel lecture.
Title from opening screen.
Abstract: This lecture will present recent research on the economics, psychology, and neuroscience of creating capabilities - the capacities to function in the economy and the larger society. Capabilities are multiple in nature. Performance in different tasks requires different combinations of capabilities. Capabilities are skills shaped by parenting, schooling, workplaces, and interactions with peers and mentors. They also have a strong genetic basis. This research moves the conceptualization of skill and its measurement beyond the usual focus on schools and scores on achievement tests to a broader notion of the skills (capabilities) that matter and how they can be measured. It analyzes the life cycle evolution of capabilities. Different stages of the life cycle are relatively more productive in creating different capabilities. Early childhood is productive for creating all capabilities. Capabilities act synergistically in creating future capabilities. The implications of this analysis for policies to promote capability formation and for analyzing poverty, social mobility, and economic and social opportunity are developed.
Prof James Heckman was awarded the 2000 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (jointly with Prof Daniel McFadden) for his pioneering work in econometrics and microeconomics. Prof Heckman received his BA in mathematics from Colorado College in 1965 and his PhD in economics from Princeton University in 1971. Since 1973, he has served as a professor of economics at the University of Chicago, where he directs the Economics Research Center, the Center for the Economics of Human Development, and the Center for Social Program Evaluation at the Harris School of Public Policy. He is a professor of law at the University of Chicago School of Law, senior research fellow at the American Bar Foundation, research fellow at the Institute for Fiscal Studies and currently is the Henry Schultz Distinguished Service Professor of Economics.
Prof Heckman's recent research focuses on human development and lifecycle skill formation, with a special emphasis on the economics of early childhood development. His research has given policymakers important new insights into such areas as education, job-training programs, minimum-wage legislation, anti-discrimination law, social supports and civil rights.
In addition to the Nobel Prize, Prof Heckman has received numerous awards for his work, including the Dennis Aigner Award for Applied Econometrics by the Journal of Econometrics, the Theodore W. Schultz Award by the American Agricultural Economics Association and the Jacob Mincer Award for Lifetime Achievement in Labor Economics Ulysses Medal by the University College Dublin. He is currently editor of the Journal of Labor Economics. He is also a member of the US National Academy of Sciences, the Econometric Society, the Society of Labor Economics and the American Statistical Association, and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Duration: 89 min.
Appears in Series:8.15:3 - Audio-visual Materials
Videos for Public -- Distinguished Lectures