Ronald Coase: An Original

Economist Ronald Coase

Ronald Coase 1910-2013

Ronald Coase passed away on Monday. I first became interested in attending the University of London after hearing him in a podcast with him. Coase was a Nobel Prize winner in Economics.  He was also a University of London International Programmes Old Boy, or as we yanks would say, an alumni. He took the London Intermediate exam as an External student in 1929, then went on to study on campus at LSE.

I am too busy with work to highlight all of his achievements, but I will say from what I know of his work, he was one of the most unique minds in the field.

Wikipedia has a quick rundown of some of his most influential work. The Lighthouse in Economics is a famous paper of his; it refutes the idea that lighthouses are public goods, and talks about them instead as club goods. His most recent work was on China.

He lived a full life, and apparently kept working late in life, he was 102 when he passed away. He was a giant in Economics, it will be a hard climb to stand on his shoulders.

Jay is studying the Diploma for Graduates in Economics by distance learning with the University of London International Programmes. He lives in Florida, USA.

Read more about Mr Coase’s recent work on China in London Connection.

4 thoughts on “Ronald Coase: An Original

  1. Nie post. I’ve been reading about Coase and specifically his theory of the firm, transaction costs etc for C116 part of the MSc Sustainable Development. I agree his influence is enormous and i didnt know about the London background. Cheers


  2. Mr. Coase influenced a few generations of economists and people in Hong Kong and China since 80s. When China was back to the world in 1978, he requested fellow student Steven Cheung who moved from US to being the Head of Economics in University of Hong Kong, which at that time radiated Coase’s school of theory to China. The land reform of China, change from Communist to private property, and many others, was mainly Mr. Coase’s influence, directly or indirectly.

    A capitalist China injected a billion or more cheap labour to the World over 30 years, which is unprecedented in human history.

    Thank you Mr. Coase.


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