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Milken Institute | Newsroom: Press Release | Milken Institute awards its 2003 Distinguished Economic Research prize to six scholars; founder of Chicago Climate Exchange receives special award
Milken Institute awards its 2003 Distinguished Economic Research prize to six scholars; founder of Chicago Climate Exchange receives special award

For Immediate Release
April 3, 2003

LOS ANGELES — Seven researchers from the United States and Belgium have been named winners of the 2003 Milken Institute Award for Distinguished Economic Research.

Six of the winners were honored for their work examining such issues as technological causes of obesity, the impact of brain drain on developing countries, and the links between drug development and human longevity.

The seventh winner, Richard L. Sandor, received a special award this year for financial innovations for the creation of the Chicago Climate Exchange, an organization of leading U.S. and international companies that have adopted a market-based program for trading and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

The scholars will be honored this week at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Los Angeles. Each winning paper comes with a $1,000 prize for its authors.

This year′s winners are:

• Darius Lakdawalla, an Associate Economist at RAND Corp., and Tomas Philipson, Professor, Irving B Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies, The Law School, and The Department of Economics, The University of Chicago. Their paper, "Technological Change and the Growth of Obesity: A Theoretical and Empirical Examination," argues that technological progress, such as improved agricultural techniques that have lowered food costs or created less physically demanding jobs, have led to the growth in obesity in developed countries.

• Frank R. Lichtenberg, Professor of Business at Columbia University. His paper, "Pharmaceutical Knowledge - Capital Accumulation & Longevity," studied the contribution of pharmaceutical research and development to human longevity, and found that so-called priority-review drugs — those considered to offer significant improvements in the treatment or prevention of a disease — had a considerable positive impact on increasing lifespan.

• Hillel Rapoport, Visiting Research Fellow, CREDPR, Department of Economics at Stanford University, Michel Beine, Université Libre de Bruxelles, and Frederic Docquier, Service des Etudes et de la Statistique, Ministère de la Région Wallonne in Belgium. Rapoport, Beine and Docquier are also affiliated with CADRE, University of Lille 2 in France. Their paper, "Brain Drain and LDCs' Growth: Winners and Losers," finds that, despite the traditional view that "brain drain" only helps the developed nations to which foreign workers emigrate, many of the less-developed countries they left are also helped through the positive impact of migration prospects on human capital formation at home.

The fourth prize — given this year to an individual who helps the public good through the use of innovative financial tools — goes to Richard L. Sandor, the founder, Chairman and CEO of the Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX).

CCX is an organization of major U.S. and international companies and the City of Chicago that have agreed to voluntarily reduce their emissions of greenhouse gases through a unique trading exchange. The participants agree to reduce their emissions 1 percent each year for four years, from 2003 through 2006. CCX will enable them to receive credit for such reductions and to buy and sell credits in order to find the most cost-effective way of achieving reductions. Trading is targeted to begin in the late spring of 2003.

This first-ever U.S. trading program designed to reduce carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions has been hailed by environmentalists as well as government and corporate officials as a sensible, market-based approach to reducing pollution believed to cause global warming.

The Milken Institute Award for Distinguished Economic Research was created four years ago to honor the best research in economics, and is open to the academic, business and public policy communities. Entries are judged by the Institute′s professional staff, who look for original, substantive research that coincides with the Institute′s focus on the interaction of social, human and financial capital to help develop innovative means and methods to finance the future.

Skip Rimer, Director of Programs and Communications
(310) 570-4654

About the Milken Institute
A nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank, the Milken Institute believes in the power of capital markets to solve urgent social and economic challenges. Its mission is to improve lives around the world by advancing innovative economic and policy solutions that create jobs, widen access to capital and enhance health. (

Members of the press may direct inquiries to:

Conrad Kiechel
Director of Communications
Phone: (310) 570-4668

Jeff Monford
Communications Consultant
Phone (310) 570.4623

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