Nobel economics prize goes to ‘natural experiments’ pioneers

 Nobel economics prize goes to ‘natural experiments’ pioneers

STOCKHOLM, Oct 11 (Reuters) – Economists David Card, Joshua Angrist and Guido Imbens won the 2021 Nobel economics prize on Monday for pioneering “natural experiments” to show real-world economic impacts in areas from minimum wage increases in the U.S. fast-food sector to migration from Castro-era Cuba.

Unlike in medicine or other sciences, economists cannot conduct rigidly controlled clinical trials. Instead, natural experiments use real-life situations to study impacts on the world, an approach that has spread to other social sciences.

“Their research has substantially improved our ability to answer key causal questions, which has been of great benefit to society,” says Peter Fredriksson, chair of the Economic Sciences Prize Committee.

Past Nobel Economics prizes have been dominated by U.S. institutions and this was no exception. Canada-born Card currently works at the University of California, Berkeley; Angrist, a dual U.S. and…

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