MIT Economist and Hockey Captain to speak at 36th Camden Conference

January 5, 2023

What will happen to workers and job opportunities in a turbulent world that includes war, inflation, a pandemic, labor shortage, and increasingly complex politics?

Some of the surprising answers will come from the February Camden Conference and one of its featured speakers, David Autor, Ford Professor in the MIT Department of Economics and Vice President of the American Economic Association.

In a 2019 article, The Economist labeled Autor “The academic voice of the American worker.” Later that same year, and with (at least) equal justification, he was christened “Twerpy MIT Economist” by John Oliver on his “Last Week Tonight” cable TV show in a segment on automation and employment.

At a webinar organized this past month by the Princeton University Bendheim Center for Finance, Autor noted among new developments, “For the first time in four decades, wage inequality is falling.  And despite inflation real wages are rising among high school grads.”

Autor’s full range of predictions will be delivered at the 36th annual Camden Conference, Global Trade and Politics:  Managing Turbulence.  The event will be held February 17 – 19, 2023 in Camden, Maine. The 2023 Camden Conference will focus on the future of global commerce and at alternative ways in which the interdependence of commerce, global politics and national security could be successfully managed for both competition and cooperation. Speakers will be describing how “national security” includes both military security and protection of the environment.

David Autor is Ford Professor in the MIT Department of Economics, Vice President of the American Economic Association, and co-director of the NBER Labor Studies Program and the J-PAL Work of the Future experimental initiative. His scholarship explores the labor-market impacts of technological change and globalization on job polarization, skill demands, earnings levels and inequality, and electoral outcomes. Autor also captains the MIT Economics hockey team, which is reputed to be one of the most highly cited teams in the MIT intramural league.

Dr. Autor earned a B.A. in Psychology from Tufts University and a Ph.D. in Public Policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government in 1999. Prior to graduate study, he spent three years directing computer skills education for economically disadvantaged children and adults in San Francisco and South Africa.

The Camden Conference is a nonprofit, non-partisan, volunteer-driven citizens’ forum with the mission of fostering informed discourse on world issues. Year-round public engagement through community events and student education programs culminates in an annual February weekend conference presented live on the stage of the Camden Opera House and livestreamed to venues in Maine and households around the world. For more information, please visit www.camdenconference.org.

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Header Photo: Aidan Kaczynski of AKZ Photography

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