Charles F. Manski

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Charles Frederick Manski (born 1948), Professor of Economics at Northwestern University, is an econometrician in the realm of rational choice theory, and an innovator in the arena of parameter identification.[1] Manski’s research spans econometrics, judgment and decision, and the analysis of social policy (such as work on "School choice"). A specialist in prediction and decision, he is known within the economics field for landmark work on “partial identification,” identification of discrete choice models, and identification of social interactions. He has also performed substantial empirical research on measurement of expectations in surveys.

Manski was predicted to win the Nobel Prize in 2015 by Reuters along with two other economists. Chicago economist John A. List for his work on field experiments and English economist Richard Blundell, for his work on labor markets were also listed as favorites to win a future Nobel Prize. [2]

Personal Life[edit]

Charles Manski was born on November 27, 1948 in Boston, Massachusetts. He is the son of Holocaust survivor and Sugihara visa recipient Samuil Manski and Estelle Zonn Manski. Manski grew up in Dorchester and West Roxbury, Massachusetts, attended Boston Latin School, and spent many afternoons in the family diner.[3] One day, while leading a Torah reading, he had an epiphany that led him away from religious studies and towards scientific skepticism:

"[I] learned something about why dogmas can be tenacious and irreconcilable. Many doctrines pose nonrefutable hypotheses. That is, they make statements about the world that are impossible to disprove. For example, it is impossible to disprove the hypothesis that the god of the Torah created the universe in six days and then rested on the seventh day. It is similarly impossible to disprove the hypothesis that the universe was created by the Flying Spaghetti Monster." [4]

Manski is married to Catherine Manski, a lecturer in the Department of Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago.[5] He has two children, journalist Rebecca Manski and sociologist Ben Manski, as well as two grandsons, Lev and Isaac Manski. [6]

Academic career[edit]

Charles Manski received his B.S. and Ph.D. in economics from MIT in 1970 and 1973. He first taught at Carnegie Mellon University (1973–80), moving on to the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (1979–83), and joining the faculty of the University of Wisconsin–Madison (U.W., 1983–98). While at the U.W., Manski served as Director of the Institute for Research on Poverty (1988–91) and as Chair of the Board of Overseers of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (1994–98). Since 1997 Manski has been Board of Trustees Professor in Economics at Northwestern University.[1]

Manski has served as a member of the National Research Council's (NRC) Committee on National Statistics (1996–2000), and the Commission on Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education (1992–98). At the NRC, he has been Chair of the Committee on Data and Research for Policy on Illegal Drugs (1998–2001) and a member of the Board on Mathematical Sciences and their Applications (2004–2007) and the Committee on Law and Justice (2009–). Manski is an elected fellow of the Econometric Society, The American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.[2] In 2009, Manski was elected to the National Academy of Sciences; he is one of 2 economists elected to the body in 2009, and one of about 60 economists elected up to that point.[7] In 2014 he was elected a Corresponding Fellow of the British Academy.[8]

As of 2007 Manski's research interests focus primarily on the field of formation of social policy with partial knowledge of treatment response. Economists and doctors alike share a common interest in gauging the effect of various "treatments" delivered to "patients." [3] Since research on treatment response rarely provides sufficient information to determine effectiveness, how should the available evidence be employed in choosing future treatments?[9]

Research findings in the media[edit]

The NRC's Committee on Data and Research for Policy on Illegal Drugs found that existing studies on efforts to address drug usage and smuggling, from U.S. military operations to eradicate coca fields in Colombia, to domestic drug treatment centers, have all been inconclusive, if the programs have been evaluated at all: “The existing drug-use monitoring systems are strikingly inadequate to support the full range of policy decisions that the nation must make ... It is unconscionable for this country to continue to carry out a public policy of this magnitude and cost without any way of knowing whether and to what extent it is having the desired effect.”[10] The study, though not ignored by the press, was initially ignored by policymakers, leading Manski to conclude, as one observer noted, that "the drug war has no interest in its own results." [11]

More recently, in 2004, Manski challenged the theoretical basis for statements in the popular media "that markets can predict an election better than polls and experts can."[12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Charles Manski, Partial Identification of Probability Distributions, New York: Springer-Verlag, 2003.
  2. ^ Partial Identification: C. Manski, Partial Identification of Probability Distributions, New York: Springer-Verlag, 2003. C. Manski, Identification for Prediction and Decision: Cambridge, Harvard University Press, 2007. Identification of Discrete Choice Models: C. Manski, “Maximum Score Estimation of the Stochastic Utility Model of Choice,” Journal of Econometrics, Vol. 3, No. 3, 1975, pp. 205–228. “Identification of Binary Response Models,” Journal of the American Statistical Association, Vol. 83, No. 403, 1988, pp. 729–738. Identification of Social Interactions: C. Manski, “Identification of Endogenous Social Effects: The Reflection Problem,” Review of Economic Studies, Vol. 60, No. 3, 1993, pp. 531–542. Measurement of Expectations in Surveys: C. Manski, “Measuring Expectations,” Econometrica, Vol. 72, No. 5, 2004, pp. 1329–1376.
  3. ^ "CharlesManski.com". Retrieved October 9, 2015. 
  4. ^ Manski, Charles (Spring 2010). "Unlearning and Discovery" (PDF). The American Economist. Retrieved October 9, 2015. 
  5. ^ "UIC English Department". 
  6. ^ "Charles F. Manski: About Charles Manski". www.charlesmanski.com. Retrieved 2015-10-10. 
  7. ^ "Charles Manski Elected to National Academy of Sciences" April 29, 2009 MEDIA CONTACT: Charles Loebbaka at c-loebbaka@northwestern.edu
  8. ^ "British Academy announces 42 new fellows". Times Higher Education. 18 July 2014. Retrieved 18 July 2014. 
  9. ^ C. Manski, Social Choice with Partial Knowledge of Treatment Response, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2005. C. Manski, “Diversified Treatment under Ambiguity,” International Economic Review, 2009, forthcoming.
  10. ^ Drug Policy News at the Wayback Machine (archived December 5, 2008), Drug Policy Education Group, Vol. 2 No.1, Spring/Summer 2001, p.5
  11. ^ "Weekly News in Review", DrugSense Weekly, August 31, 2001 #215
  12. ^ Stix, Gary."Super Tuesday: Markets Predict Outcome Better Than Polls"]; Scientific American, February 2008

Sources[edit]

  • "No Data on Effectiveness;" Drug Policy News, Vol. 2 No. 1, Spring/Summer 2001
  • Stix, Gary. "Super Tuesday: Markets Predict Outcome Better Than Polls"; Scientific American, February 2008
  • Institute for Policy Research Bio
  • Northwestern Bio
  • Website on drug policy
  • C. Manski, Social Choice with Partial Knowledge of Treatment Response, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2005.
  • C. Manski, “Diversified Treatment under Ambiguity,” International Economic Review, 2009, forthoming.
  • C. Manski, Partial Identification of Probability Distributions, New York: Springer-Verlag, 2003.
  • C. Manski, Identification for Prediction and Decision: Cambridge, Harvard University Press, 2007.
  • C. Manski, “Maximum Score Estimation of the Stochastic Utility Model of Choice,” Journal of Econometrics, Vol. 3, No. 3, 1975, pp. 205–228.
  • C. Manski, “Identification of Binary Response Models,” Journal of the American Statistical Association, Vol. 83, No. 403, 1988, pp. 729–738.
  • C. Manski, “Identification of Endogenous Social Effects: The Reflection Problem,” Review of Economic Studies, Vol. 60, No. 3, 1993, pp. 531–542.
  • C. Manski, “Measuring Expectations,” Econometrica, Vol. 72, No. 5, 2004, pp. 1329–1376.
  • Manski, Charles F. "Why Polls Are Fickle;" The New York Times. Op-Ed 4 [2000]
  • Manski webpage