In Memory of Harold Demsetz

Mr. Demsetz 2

Harold Demsetz

Harold Demsetz was a Professor of Economics at UCLA from 1971 until his retirement (if he ever really retired). He was the Arthur Andersen Chair in Business Economics and chaired the UCLA Department of Economics from 1978-1980. He was also elected fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. But the most important thing about Harold was his energy and his ideas.

Considered one of the most creative and deep microeconomists of the 20th century, Harold was one of the pioneers of “New Institutional Economics”. His most famous paper (“Production, Information Costs, and Economic Organization,” written with fellow UCLA professor Armen Alchian for the American Economic Review in 1972) was featured as one of American Economic Review’s Top 20 articles of the 20th Century. Over his illustrious career Harold’s many contributions to his field have stood the test of time.  He will be greatly missed.

Here are some tributes that have been written about Harold:

John Riley, Professor, UCLA

Ben Klein, Professor, UCLA

Tom Hubbard, Professor, Kellogg School of Management.

Sam Peltzman, Professor (Emeritus), University of Chicago

Jonathan Adler, Professor, Case Western Reserve University School of Law

Peter Boettke, Professor, George Mason University

Frederic Sautet, Professor, George Mason University

Chicago’s Lesser-Known Free Marketer” appeared in The Wall Street Journal

American Economic Association background on distinguished fellow Harold Demsetz remarkable intellectual career.


If you have a memory of Harold that you would like us to post, please email: