Like a proud father I would like to announce to the world that both Chris Coyne and Pete Leeson successfully defended their PhD theses yesterday and have now joined the ranks of PhD economists. (Mises.org readers know the names Leeson and Coyne well.)Chris has accepted a job at Hampden Sydney College in Virginia. Tony Carilli, Greg Dempster, etc. will be great colleagues for Chris to work with. Chris is an amazingly organized and skilled co-author and I imagine that the stream of publications from HSC in our circles will be of a high volume. And Chris is a first-rate teacher.
Pete is waiting to finalize an offer from West Virginia University, where he will join Russ Sobel and others in their PhD program. This is very exciting and will offer another opportunity for students on this list to think about an alternative PhD program. Russ is an outstanding economist in his own right and the team of Pete and Russ should be very attractive to students.
The one common factor I heard this year in the market from research universities about Pete and Chris was: “They are very interesting and their work is exciting, but is it really economics?” This was less critical in Pete’s case, but even there the best comment I heard from a mainstream guy was the following: “We have no doubt that Pete will leave a lasting imprint on the profession–even if it is an odd imprint.”
I love that line, and the man who uttered it was in the end one of Pete’s biggest supporters in pushing him. Still both of these guys are outstanding young economists and are now getting ready to start their careers of stratching and clawing their way through the profession. Red in tooth and claw I keep telling them!