Hal Ronald Varian (born March 18, 1947, in Wooster, Ohio) is an economist specializing in microeconomics and information economics. He is the chief economist at Google and he holds the title of emeritus professor at the University of California, Berkeley where he was founding dean of the School of Information. He has written two bestselling textbooks: Intermediate Microeconomics, an undergraduate microeconomics text, and Microeconomic Analysis, an advanced text. Together with Carl Shapiro, he co-authored Information Rules: A Strategic Guide to the Network Economy and The Economics of Information Technology: An Introduction.
He joined Google in 2002 as a consultant, and has worked on the design of advertising auctions, econometrics, finance, corporate strategy, and public policy.
He received his B.S. from MIT in economics in 1969 and both his M.A. (mathematics) and Ph.D. (economics) from the University of California, Berkeley in 1973. He has taught at MIT, Stanford University, the University of Oxford, the University of Michigan, the University of Siena and other universities around the world. He has two honorary doctorates, from the University of Oulu, Finland in 2002, and a Dr. h. c. from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany, awarded in 2006.
Varian is married and has one child.