Economists: Photographs by Mariana Cook is a dynamic new book slated for publication by Yale University Press on February 3, 2020. Edited and with an introduction by Robert Solow, it features full-page portraits by Mariana Cook and brief essays written by prominent economists in response to questions posed by Solow about their work.
The text and photographs offer a unique look into the world of economists and serve as an accessible entry point into the views shaping policy and research decisions by luminaries in the field. In his foreword, Solow outlines the ways that economists’ works proceed from theoretical models and incorporate mathematical equations and data to help explain how various aspects of the economy work. Solow describes the book as an attempt to offer an understanding of the intellectual labor of economists, with their essays providing a window onto their most pressing concerns and ideas.
The Russell Sage Foundation provided financial support for the production and publication of Economists. Many of the profiled subjects have RSF affiliations. Among the scholars featured in the book are RSF grantees Daron Acemoglu, David Card, Raj Chetty, Esther Duflo, James Heckman, Caroline Hoxby, Daniel Kahneman, Alvin Roth, Emmanuel Saez, and Janet Yellen; former RSF trustees Alan Blinder, Lawrence Katz, Alan Krueger, and Richard Thaler; Behavioral Economics Roundtable members George Akerlof, Marianne Bertrand, Peter Diamond, Edmund Phelps, Robert Shiller, and Jean Tirole; visiting scholars Olivier Blanchard, Avinash Dixit, Claudia Goldin, and Cecilia Rouse; and RSF authors Kenneth Arrow, Stanley Fischer, Robert Hall, Thomas Sargent, Amartya Sen, and Lawrence Summers. Robert C. Merton, winner of the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1997 and son of renowned sociologist and inaugural Russell Sage Foundation scholar Robert K. Merton, is also profiled.
Robert Solow is the Russell Sage Foundation’s Robert K. Merton Scholar and Institute Professor Emeritus at M.I.T. He was a visiting scholar at the foundation from 1999–2000 and became the Merton scholar in 2001. Solow was awarded the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1987. Mariana Cook is a photographer whose books include Mathematicians: An Outer View of the Inner World and Faces of Science: Portraits.