John Komlos

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John Komlos
Born (1944-12-28) December 28, 1944 (age 72)
Budapest, Hungary
Nationality American
Institutions Duke University
University of Munich
Field History of economics
Alma mater University of Chicago
Influences Robert Fogel
Contributions Anthropometric history

John Komlos (born December 28, 1944 in Budapest, Hungary) is an American economic historian of Hungarian descent and former holder of the Chair of Economic History at the University of Munich for eighteen years. In the 1980s, Komlos was instrumental in the emergence of anthropometric history, the study of the effect of economic development on human biological outcomes such as physical stature.


Komlos received a PhD in history (1978) and a second PhD in economics (1990) from the University of Chicago, where he was influenced by the Nobel Prize winning economic historian Robert Fogel to research the economic history of human physical stature. Komlos named this new discipline "anthropometric history" in 1989. He was a fellow at the Carolina Population Center of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill from 1984 to 1986. Komlos also taught at such institutions as Harvard University, Duke University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Vienna, and the Vienna University of Economics. He was professor of economics and of economic history at the University of Munich for eighteen years before his retirement. He is also the founding editor of Economics and Human Biology in 2003. Elected fellow of the Cliometric Society in 2013.

Selected publications[edit]


  • What Every Economics Student Needs to Know and Doesn't Get: In the Usual Principles Text. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe. 2014. 
  • Nutrition and Economic Development in the Eighteenth-Century Habsburg Monarchy: An Anthropometric History. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. 1989. 
  • (with Bernd Süssmuth (de)) (2010). Empirische Ökonomie: Eine Einführung in Methoden und Anwendungen. Heidelberg Dordrecht London New York: Springer Verlag. 
  • (Ed.), Stature, Living Standards, and Economic Development: Essays in Anthropometric History. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press. 1994. 
  • (Ed.), Timothy Cuff (1998). Classics of Anthropometric History: A Selected Anthology. St. Katharinen, Germany: Scripta Mercaturae. 


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