Both Harvard faculty members were recently elected to the National Academy of Sciences.
Oliver Hart (pictured), whose path breaking work on contract theory continues to transform the economics profession and the wider world, was honored by being inducted into the world's preeminent scientific association, the National Academy of Sciences.
János Kornai, an emeritus member of the Harvard faculty, was inducted as a Foreign Associate. János now lives in Hungary.
From the NAS website, “Election to NAS membership in the NAS is considered one of the highest honors that a scientist can receive. Read more about our members and their contributions to science.”
They join previously elected Harvard professors, Gary E. Chamberlain, Drew Fudenberg, Claudia D. Goldin, Dale W. Jorgenson, Lawrence F. Katz, Eric S. Maskin, Kenneth S. Rogoff, and Lawrence H. Summers.
Oliver Hart is currently the Andrew E. Furer Professor of Economics at Harvard University, where he has taught since 1993. Hart works mainly on contract theory, the theory of the firm, corporate finance, and law and economics. His research centers on the roles that ownership structure and contractual arrangements play in the governance and boundaries of corporations. He has published a book (Firms, Contracts, and Financial Structure, Oxford University Press, 1995) and numerous journal articles. He has used his theoretical work on firms in two legal cases as a government expert (Black and Decker v. U.S.A. and WFC Holdings Corp. (Wells Fargo) v. U.S.A.). He is a Fellow of the Econometric Society, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the British Academy, and the American Finance Association, and has several honorary degrees. He has been president of the American Law and Economics Association and a vice president of the American Economic Association.
János Kornai is Allie S. Freed Professor of Economics Emeritus at Harvard and Professor Emeritus at Corvinus University of Budapest, Hungary. He served at Harvard between 1986 and 2002. His research has focused on the critical analysis of the socialist system and post-socialist transition. After the collapse of socialism in Eastern Europe, his attention has partly turned to economic policy, especially to macroeconomic problems and the reform of the welfare state. Recently his interest has been in the comparative analysis of capitalism, as reflected in his latest book, Dynamism, Rivalry and the Surplus Economy (2013).