2 Americans Win Economics Nobel for Strides in Matching

Winner of African governance prize: No one
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 15, 2012 7:12 AM CDT
Nobel Economics Prize Goes to 2 Americans
Members of the Swedish Royal Academy of Sciences present the winners of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, in Stockholm, Sweden, Oct. 15, 2012.   (AP Photo/Scanpix Sweden, Henrik Montgomery)

Americans Alvin Roth and Peter Shapley have won the Nobel prize for economics on the strength of their work matching players in a wide range of markets, the Wall Street Journal reports. "For example, students have to be matched with schools, and donors of human organs with patients in need of a transplant. How can such matching be accomplished as efficiently as possible?" asks the Swedish Academy in charge of the awards. "The prize rewards two scholars who have answered these questions on a journey from abstract theory on stable allocations to practical design of market institutions."

The prize is the last of the 2012 Nobels to be awarded, the AP notes. In other major prize news, this year's winner of the Mo Ibrahim prize for good governance in Africa is... nobody. Just as in 2009 and 2010, no candidate qualified for the world's biggest individual prize, at $5 million. The prize is intended for a leader who's elected democratically, boosts living standards, and leaves office voluntarily, the BBC notes. "You make your bed, you have to lie on it. If we said we're going to have a prize for exceptional leadership, we have to stick to that. We are not going to compromise," said Ibrahim. (Read more Nobel Prize in Economics stories.)

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