Daron Acemoğlu

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Daron Acemoğlu
Daron Acemoglu.jpg
Born (1967-09-03) September 3, 1967 (age 54)
Istanbul, Turkey
Nationality Turkey and the United States[1]
Spouse(s) Asu Özdağlar[2]
Institution Massachusetts Institute of Technology
London School of Economics
Field Economic growth, Development Economics, Political economy
School or tradition
New institutional economics
Alma mater London School of Economics
University of York
Awards John Bates Clark Medal (2005)
John von Neumann Award (2007)
Erwin Plein Nemmers Prize in Economics (2012)
Information at IDEAS / RePEc

Kamer Daron Acemoğlu (Turkish pronunciation: [ˈadʒemoːɫu]; born September 3, 1967) is a Turkish-born American economist of Armenian origin.[3][4][5]

Life and career

Acemoğlu was born in Istanbul, Turkey to an Armenian family.[6][7] His father, Kevork, who died in 1988, was a lawyer and lecturer at the University of Istanbul. His mother Irma (died in 1991) was a principal and teacher at an Armenian middle school in Istanbul.[8]

Acemoğlu graduated in 1986 from the Galatasaray High School in Istanbul, going on to gain his B.A. degree from the University of York, UK and his M.Sc. degree in Econometrics and Mathematical Economics and then his Ph.D. degree in 1992 from the London School of Economics.

He was a lecturer in economics at the LSE from 1992–1993, before becoming a member of the M.I.T. faculty in 1993. He was promoted to full professor in 2000, and was named the Charles P. Kindleberger Professor of Applied Economics in 2004. He is a member of the Economic Growth program of the Canadian Institute of Advanced Research. He is also affiliated with the National Bureau of Economic Research, Center for Economic Performance, International Growth Centre, and Centre for Economic Policy Research. Acemoğlu is the co-editor of Econometrica, Review of Economics and Statistics, and associate editor of the Journal of Economic Growth, and an editorial committee board member of the Annual Review of Economics. He was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2006.[9]

Currently the Elizabeth and James Killian Professor of Economics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston he is among the 10 most cited economists in the world according to IDEAS/RePEc. Winner of the 2005 John Bates Clark Medal.[10] His most cited article is "Colonial origins of comparative development" (2001). His principal interests are political economy, development economics, economic growth, technology, income and wage inequality, human capital and training, and labour economics. His most recent works concentrate on the role of institutions in economic development and political economy.

Acemoğlu has received a Turkish presidential award on Culture and Arts, in 2013, and another on Sciences from the Turkish Academy of Sciences in 2006.[11][12]


Acemoğlu was one of the academics who signed a letter in support of legalizing marijuana in Colorado state's successful 2013 ballot referendum Amendment 64.[13]

He wrote an op-ed for The Globe and Mail on the 2014 Ukrainian revolution, favoring inclusive society rather than one based on extractive institutions, "where an elite controls the economic and political system and uses its power to extract wealth from the society at everyone else’s expense", a term defined in his recent book.[14]

In a Hürriyet interview on March 30, 2014, with reference to a recent offer of an ambassadorial posting from Turkish Government, he stated: "I do not intend to be part of bureaucracy or enter politics".[15]

Personal life

He is married to Asu Özdağlar, a Turkish professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT[2] and daughter of a Turkish politician, İsmail Özdağlar, a former government minister.

Acemoğlu has become a celebrity based on his Acemoğlu Facts tumblr feed.[16] The meme is a spin-off of Chuck Norris Facts with an economics flavour, documenting Acemoğlu's fictitious and often preposterous feats in the study of economics.


James Malcomson, one of his doctoral examiners, said

Selected publications


  1. "Daron Acemoğlu's homepage". MIT Department of Economics. Retrieved July 4, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. 2.0 2.1 Hardesty, Larry (June 18, 2013). "Game Theory Is No Longer Just for Economists". MIT Technology Review. Retrieved July 4, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. Sorman, Guy (2013). Economics Does Not Lie [L’Économie ne ment pas]. Encounter Books. p. 31. Daron Acemoğlu, an Armenian from Turkey<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. "Why Nations Fail". International School of Economics at Tbilisi State University. 10 February 2014. Acemoglu, a Turkish-born Armenian<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Freeland, Chrystia (6 June 2013). "Drawbacks to Ruling With a Heavy Hand". The New York Times. Daron Acemoglu, a Turkish-born professor of economics<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. Kömürcüler, Güneş (24 June 2013). "'Turkish economy at high risk, but not due to Gezi protests,' MIT economist says". Hürriyet Daily News. ...Acemoğlu, a Turkish-American economist of Armenian descent...<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "Armenian Declines Davutoglu Appointment". Asbarez. 30 March 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. Gavin, Robert (June 15, 2005). "MIT professor named top economist under 40". Boston Globe. Retrieved July 4, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "Book of Members, 1780–2010: Chapter A" (PDF). American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved April 1, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. "The Man Who Succeeded Gerschenkron". EconomicPrincipals.com. April 24, 2005. Retrieved July 4, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. 11.0 11.1 "Bilim Akademisi – Bilim Akademisi üyesi Daron Acemoğlu'na Cumhurbaşkanlığı Ödülü" (in Turkish). Bilim Akademisi. December 24, 2013. Retrieved July 4, 2014.CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. http://www.trthaber.com/foto-galeri/cumhurbaskanligi-kultur-ve-sanat-buyuk-odulu-2013/5217/sayfa-14.html
  13. "A Letter of Support From the Academic Community: Yes on Amendment 64". Colorado Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol. 2012. Retrieved February 28, 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  14. Acemoglu, Daron (March 14, 2014). "Ukraine's legacy of serial oligopoly". Globe and Mail. Retrieved July 4, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  15. Hürriyet, March 30, 2014, interview with Cansu Çamlıbel, p. 16.
  16. "Daron Acemoglu Facts". Tumblr. Retrieved July 4, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  17. Shimer, Robert (Winter 2007). "Daron Acemoğlu: 2005 John Bates Clark Medalist". Journal of Economic Perspectives. 21 (1): 191–207. doi:10.1257/jep.21.1.191. Retrieved July 4, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  18. http://www.amacad.org/news/classsec2006.aspx Academy announcement
  19. "Daron Acemoglu". Canadian Institute For Advanced Research. Retrieved 13 November 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  20. Tremmel, Pat Vaughan (April 16, 2012). "Nemmers Prizes Announced". Northwestern University News. Retrieved July 4, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  21. Hill, Andrew (September 13, 2012). "Biographies and economics dominate". Financial Times. Retrieved July 4, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links