DEFINITION of 'Robert W. Fogel'

An American economic historian and scientist who won the 1993 Nobel Prize in Economics, along with Douglass North, for his methods of explaining economic and institutional change. Robert William Fogel is considered a pioneer of cliometrics, a branch of economic history. In the 1960s, he became known for his research on the impact of railroads on economic growth in the United States. In the 1970s, he made controversial arguments about the economic viability of slavery. Fogel has also conducted research on the economics of life expectancy and aging.

BREAKING DOWN 'Robert W. Fogel'

Fogel was born in New York City in 1926 and earned his Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins in 1964. He trained under George Stigler, Carter Goodrich and Simon Kuznets. Fogel has spent most of his career as a professor at the University of Chicago but has also taught at Harvard, Johns Hopkins, the University of Rochester and Cambridge.

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