William Lazonick

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William Lazonick
Fields Economic history, business history
Institutions University of Massachusetts Lowell
INSEAD (1996-2007)
University of Tokyo (1996-1997)
Barnard College (1985-1993)
Harvard University (1975-1985)
Alma mater University of Toronto
London School of Economics
Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies
Harvard University (Ph.D.)

William Lazonick is a Professor at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, where he directs the Center for Industrial Competitiveness.[1] He is also a visiting professor at the University of Ljubljana where he teaches a PhD course on the theory of innovative enterprise. Previously he was an Assistant and Associate Professor of Economics at Harvard University (1975–1984), Professor of Economics at Barnard College of Columbia University (1985–1993), and Visiting Scholar and then Distinguished Research Professor at INSEAD (1996–2007). He is currently a visiting professor at the University of Bordeaux and the University of Ljubljana. He has also been a visiting professor at the University of Technology Sydney, University of Toronto, University of Tokyo, University of Toulouse, Norwegian School of Management, and Telecom School of Management (Paris). In 1984-1986, he was a research fellow at Harvard Business School, and in 1989-1990 a visiting scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.

Lazonick's academic qualifications include a B.Com degree from the University of Toronto (1968), a M.Sc. degree in economics from the London School of Economics (1969), and a Ph.D. degree in economics from Harvard University and the Graduate Institute of International Studies, Geneva (1975). In 1991 Uppsala University awarded him an honorary doctorate for his work on the theory and history of economic development.

In 1991 Lazonick was the president of the professional association of business historians in the US: the Business History Conference.[2]

Among Lazonick's books are Competitive Advantage of the Shop Floor (Harvard University Press, 1990), Business Organization and the Myth of the Market Economy (Cambridge University Press, 1991), and Organization and Technology in Capitalist Development (Edward Elgar Publishers, 1992). His book, Sustainable Prosperity in the New Economy? Business Organization and High-Tech Employment in the United States (W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, 2009) was awarded the 2010 Schumpeter Prize by the International Joseph A. Schumpeter Society.[3] With David J. Teece, Lazonick has edited Management Innovation: Essays in the Spirit of Alfred D. Chandler, Jr. (Oxford University Press, 2012). Many of his books have been translated into Chinese as well as other foreign languages.

Lazonick is a critic of the financialized US corporation, with his criticism focusing on the highly negative impacts of stock buybacks and stock-based executive compensation on innovation and job creation in the United States.[4] Harvard Business School awarded his article, "Innovative Business Models and Varieties of Capitalism: Financialization of the US Corporation," the Henrietta Larson Award for best article in Business History Review in 2010.

Lazonick's research has been funded by, among other organizations, the Ford Foundation, Institute for New Economic Thinking, Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, National Science Foundation, European Commission, Center for Global Partnership of the Japan Foundation, Svenska Handelsbanken Foundation, Russell Sage Foundation. and Jerome Levy Economics Institute.

His opinion pieces based on his research have appeared in The Financial Times,[5] BusinessWeek,[6] and The Huffington Post.[7] From June to October 2011, Lazonick wrote a weekly series of blog posts called "Breaking through the Jobless Recovery" on New Deal 2.0, a project of the Roosevelt Institute, and with Ken Jacobson and Lynn Parramore, a series of op-ed articles under the theme, "Corporations for the 99%, that appeared on Alternet, Huffington Post, Salon.com, and Naked Capitalism.

Lazonick is co-founder and president of The Academic-Industry Research Network (www.theAIRnet.org), a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation that is devoted to the proposition that a sound understanding of the dynamics of industrial development requires collaboration between academic scholars and industrial experts. The goal of theAIRnet is to discover the ways in which, through innovation, business and government can contribute to equitable and stable economic growth.


  1. ^ http://www.uml.edu/centers/cic/Faculty/William_Lazonick.html University of Massachusetts Lowell (Accessed Dec 2010)
  2. ^ http://www.thebhc.org/governance/preslist.html Business History Conference: Presidential List (Accessed Dec 2010)
  3. ^ http://www.upjohninst.org/publications/titles/spne.html
  4. ^ “The New Economy Business Model and the Crisis of US Capitalism,” Capitalism and Society, 4, 2 2009; “The Explosion of Executive Pay and the Erosion of American Prosperity,” Entreprises et Histoire, 57, 2010; ”Innovative Business Models and Varieties of Capitalism: Financialization of the US Corporation,” Business History Review, 84, 4, 2010; US Biopharmaceutical Finance and the Sustainability of the Biotech Business Model,” with Öner Tulum, Research Policy, 40, 9, 2011: 1170-1187; “The Rise and Demise of Lucent Technologies,” with Edward March, Journal of Strategic Management Education, 7, 4, 2011; “The Financialization of the U.S. Corporation: What Has Been Lost, and How It Can Be Regained,” Seattle University Law Review, 36, 2013: 857-909; “The Risk-Reward Nexus in the Innovation-Inequality Relationship: Who Takes the Risks? Who Gets the Rewards?” with Mariana Mazzucato, Industrial and Corporate Change, 22, 4, 2013: 1093-1128; “Apple’s Business Model: What Should the World’s Richest Company Do With All Those Profits?” with Mariana Mazzucato and Öner Tulum, Accounting Forum, 37, 4, 2103: 249-267
  5. ^ http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/e75440f6-8b0e-11dd-b634-0000779fd18c,dwp_uuid=11f94e6e-7e94-11dd-b1af-000077b07658.html?nclick_check=1
  6. ^ http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/09_34/b4144096907029.htm.
  7. ^ http://www.huffingtonpost.com/william-lazonick/insurance-executives-a-bi_b_501093.html; http://www.huffingtonpost.com/william-lazonick/high-health-care-costs-em_b_735870.html