Research shows the success of a bacterial community depends on its shape.
Four faculty members in the Department of Economics -- Daron Acemoglu, Susan Athey, Dora Costa and Bengt Holmstrom -- have been appointed to named professorships.
Associate Professor Acemoglu is the new Pentti J.K. Kouri Career development Professor. His research concentrates on macroeconomics and the internal organization of the firm, with emphasis on human capital, wage inequality, unemployment and growth. He joined the MIT faculty in 1993 after working as a lecturer at the London School of Economics (LSE) and as a research assistant at the Centre for Economic Performance. He received the PhD (1992) and the MSc (1990) from the LSE, and the BA from the University of York in England in 1989. Dr. Acemoglu was promoted to associate professor in July.
Assistant Professor Athey, who is a visiting professor at Yale University's Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics in 1997-98, has been named to the Castle Knob Career Development Professorship. Her research interests are in developing mathematical tools for making qualitative predictions in economic models, especially models about uncertainty, private information and portfolio investment problems.
Professor Athey joined the MIT faculty in 1995 and received the MIT Undergraduate Economic Association Teaching Award in 1996. She received the AB (1991) from Duke University in economics, mathematics and computer science, and the PhD in economics from Stanford University in 1995.
Dr. Costa has been named the Ford Career Development Associate Professor of Economics. She joined the MIT faculty as an assistant professor in 1993 after receiving the PhD from the University of Chicago earlier that year and the BA in economics and mathematics from the University of California at Berkeley in 1986.
Professor Costa's research focuses primarily on labor economics issues including retirement, elderly living arrangements, determinants of older-age morbidity and mortality, and long-term trends in the health of the population. She is also a faculty research fellow in the National Bureau of Economic Research's programs in the development of the American econ-omy and on aging. She is the author of the forthcoming book The Evolution of Retirement: An American Economic History, 1880-1990 (University of Chicago Press). Dr. Costa was promoted to associate professor in July.
Professor of Economics and Management Bengt Holmstrom, the new Paul A. Sam-uelson Professor, is an internationally recognized authority on the economic the-ory of organization. He has written extensively on performance evaluation, executive compensation, capital management, labor contracts and wage policy.
Professor Holmstrom was named to the faculty of the Department of Economics and the Sloan School of Management in 1994 after 11 years at Yale University. He was also on the faculties of Northwestern University (1979-83) and the Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration.
He holds the BS from the University of Helsinki (1972) in mathematics, physics, theoretical physics and statistics; the MSc from Stanford (1975) in operations research; and the PhD from Stanford's Graduate School of Business (1978). Professor Holmstrom is a fellow of the Econometric Society and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on October 1, 1997.