February 20, 1961 |
Moscow, Soviet Union
University of Chicago
Law and economics
School or tradition
|New Keynesian economics|
|Influenced||Rafael La Porta
|Contributions||Legal origins theory
Big push model
|Awards||John Bates Clark Medal (1999)|
|Information at IDEAS / RePEc|
Andrei Shleifer (// SHLY-fər; born February 20, 1961) is a Russian American economist and Professor of Economics at Harvard University, where he has taught since 1991. Shleifer was awarded the biannual John Bates Clark Medal in 1999 for his seminal works in three fields: corporate finance (corporate governance, law and finance), the economics of financial markets (deviations from efficient markets), and the economics of transition.
IDEAS/RePEc has ranked him as the top economist in the world, and he is also listed as #1 on the list of "Most-Cited Scientists in Economics & Business". He served as project director of the Harvard Institute for International Development's Russian aid project from its inauguration in 1992 until 1997.
He was born to a Jewish family in the Soviet Union and emigrated to Rochester, New York, as a teenager in 1976, where he attended an inner-city school and learned English from episodes of Charlie's Angels. He then studied mathematics, obtaining his B.A. from Harvard University in 1982. Following this, he went to graduate school in economics, acquiring his Ph.D. from MIT in 1986. As a freshman at Harvard, Shleifer took Math 55 with Brad DeLong; he has said that the course made him realize he was not destined to be a mathematician, but the experience gave him a future co-author. Shleifer also met his mentor and professor, Lawrence Summers, during his undergraduate education at Harvard. The two went on to be co-authors, joint grant recipients, and faculty colleagues.
He has held a tenured position in the Department of Economics at Harvard University since 1991 and was, from 2001 through 2006, the Whipple V. N. Jones Professor of Economics. Previously, he taught at the Graduate School of Business at The University of Chicago and briefly at Princeton University.
Shleifer's earliest work was in financial economics, where he has contributed to the field of behavioral finance. He has also written influential papers on political economy, the economics of transition, and economic development, collaborating with his former colleagues in Chicago, Kevin M. Murphy and Robert W. Vishny. Their paper "Industrialization and the Big Push" was credited by Paul Krugman as a major breakthrough which ended a "long slump in development theory".
In recent years, his research has focused on the legal origins theory (also sometimes known as law and finance theory), which claims that the legal tradition a country adheres to (such as common law or various types of civil law) is an important determining factor for a country's development, most of all financial development.
The Clark medal citation described him as a "superb economist, working in the old Chicago tradition of building simple models, emphasizing basic economic mechanisms, and carefully looking at the evidence.... A recurring theme of his research is the respective role of markets, institutions, and governments."
In 1994 Shleifer founded with fellow academics—and behavioral finance specialists—Josef Lakonishok and Robert Vishny a Chicago-based money management firm known as LSV Asset Management. As of February 2006, it managed about $50 billion in quantitative value equity portfolios, though, according to the firm's website, Shleifer has sold his ownership stake.
Work in Russia
During the early 1990s, Andrei Shleifer was an advisor to Anatoly Chubais, the then vice-premier of Russia, handling the portfolio of Rosimushchestvo (the Committee for the Management of State Property), and was one of the engineers of Russian privatization. Shleifer was also tasked with establishing a stock market for Russia that would be a world-class capital market.
In 1996 complaints about the Harvard Project led Congress to launch a General Accounting Office investigation, which concluded that the Harvard Institute for International Development was given "substantial control of the U.S. assistance program.”
In 1997 USAID canceled most of its funding for the Harvard Institute for International Development (HIID) after investigations showed that top HIID officials Andre Schleifer and Johnathan Hay had used their positions and insider information to profit from investments in the Russian securities markets. Among other things, the Institute for a Law Based Economy (ILBE) was used to assist Schleifer's wife, who operated a hedge fund which speculated in Russian bonds 
Some of the public allegations concerning Shleifer and Summers drew considerable criticism from his close friends and collaborators. Edward Glaeser once stated to The Harvard Crimson that the Institutional Investor article "How Harvard Lost Russia" on Shleifer's role in the Harvard advisory program in Russia "is a potent piece of hate creation—not quite ‘The Protocols of the Elders of Zion,’ but it's in that camp." A Chicago Tribune article attributed Shleifer's fall from grace to "political maneuvering in Moscow".
In August 2005, Harvard University, Shleifer and the Justice department reached an agreement under which the university paid $26.5 million to settle the five-year-old lawsuit. Shleifer was also responsible for paying $2 million worth of damages, though he did not admit any wrongdoing.
- Boycko, Maxim; ——; Vishny, Robert (1995). Privatizing Russia. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. ISBN 0-262-02389-X.
- Botero, J.; Djankov, S.; La Porta, R.; López de Silanes, F.; —— (2004). "The Regulation of Labor". Quarterly Journal of Economics 119 (4): 1339–1382. doi:10.1162/0033553042476215.
- Djankov, S.; La Porta, R.; López de Silanes, F.; —— (2002). "The Regulation of Entry". Quarterly Journal of Economics 117 (1): 1–37. doi:10.1162/003355302753399436.
- Djankov, S.; La Porta, R.; López de Silanes, F.; —— (2003). "Courts". Quarterly Journal of Economics 118 (2): 453–517. doi:10.1162/003355303321675437.
- La Porta, R.; López de Silanes, F.; ——; Vishny, R. W. (1998). "Law and Finance". Journal of Political Economy 106 (6): 1113–1155. doi:10.1086/250042.
- La Porta, R.; López de Silanes, F.; —— (1999). "Corporate Ownership Around the World". Journal of Finance 54 (2): 471–517. doi:10.1111/0022-1082.00115.
- La Porta, R.; López de Silanes, F.; ——; Vishny, R. W. (2000). "Investor Protection and Corporate Governance". Journal of Financial Economics 58 (1–2): 3–27. doi:10.1016/S0304-405X(00)00065-9.
- Mulligan, C.; —— (2005). "Conscription as Regulation". American Law and Economics Review 7 (1): 85–111. doi:10.1093/aler/ahi009.
- ——; Vishny, R. W. (1997). "A Survey of Corporate Governance". Journal of Finance 52 (2): 737–783. doi:10.2307/2329497. JSTOR 2329497.
- —— (2000). Inefficient Markets: An Introduction to Behavioral Finance. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-829227-9.
- Andrei Shleifer. "The Age of Milton Friedman". Retrieved 2013-10-19.
- "Economist Rankings at IDEAS". Ideas.repec.org. Retrieved 2011-09-13.
- "Most-Cited Scientists in Economics & Business" ISI Web of Knowledge
- Wedel, Janine. Shadow Elite: How the World's New Power Brokers Undermine Democracy, Government, and the Free Market. New York: Basic, 2009.
- The Harvard Crimson: "Was Shleifer Screwed? - Sure, he had to pay a $2 million settlement—but he also got mad loot from Harvard" By Zachary M. Seward September 29, 2005
- Bhayani, Paras D. (June 4, 2007). "Andrei Shleifer and J. Bradford DeLong". Harvard Crimson. Retrieved 2009-03-12.
- Bombardieri, Marcella (2006-10-14). "Harvard professor loses honorary title in ethics violation". Boston Globe.
- Paul Krugman. "The Fall and Rise of Development Economics". Retrieved 2013-10-19.
- "Andrei Shleifer, Clark medal citation" (PDF). aeaweb.org. Retrieved 2013-10-19.
- How Harvard lost Russia at the Wayback Machine (archived September 27, 2007)
- How Harvard lost Russia at the Wayback Machine (archived September 27, 2007)
- "Who Taught Crony Capitalism to Russia?". The Wall Street Journal Europe. March 19, 2001. Retrieved 2011-11-11.
- David McClintick. "How Harvard lost Russia". Retrieved 2015-08-10.
- David McClintick. "How Harvard lost Russia" (PDF). Retrieved 2015-08-10.
- David Warsh (1999-05-02). "Chicago School Sidewalk To Russian Privatization". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2013-10-19.
- Faculty page at Harvard University
- Who's Scheifer
- Citation rankings
- Institutional Investor: How Harvard Lost Russia
- Book review in Finance and Development (An IMF publication) of "Without a Map: Political Tactics and Economic Reform in Russia" by Andrei Shleifer and Daniel Treisman