Economics Faculty Recognized for Excellence in Teaching

The Provost’s office at the University of Connecticut regularly recognizes faculty members with excellent teaching evaluations commending them as achieving “excellence in teaching”.

A number of faculty members in the economics department have received this recognition in the past year:  Professors Talia Bar, Ken Couch, Delia Furtado, Paul Hallwood, Olivier Morand, Susan Randolph, Kathy Segerson, Mikhael Shor, Owen Svalestad, and Jackie Zhao.

Congratulations to these economics faculty for their important contributions to the educational mission of UConn!

Professor Hallwood Quoted in the Quarterly Journal of Political Science

hallwoodProfessor Paul Hallwood is quoted in a paper in the current issue of the Quarterly Journal of Political Science (Vol. 10, 2) b by Harvard and Princeton co- authors on the hot topic of inter-Arab state political relationships.

Professor Hallwood was for several years an economic advisor working in the London Embassy of the Saudi Arabian government.

Professor Hallwood’s Book Reviewed in Applied Economics Journal

Economics of the OceansBook Review

Paul Hallwood, Economics of the Oceans: Rights, Rents and Resources. Oxon and New York: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group. 298 pages. ISBN: 978-0-415-63911-8.

“Economics of the Oceans fills a critical gap between broad environmental economics texts and marine resource texts focused on only one resource. Its major strength is the ease with which Paul Hallwood blends background information, case studies and economic theory.

“Over fifty percent of the book is on non-fish resources and includes important ocean resource topics such as coral reef protection, mineral extraction, ocean pollution, maritime piracy and shipwreck recovery. The major strength of the book is the ease with which the author blends background information, interesting case studies and economic theory. The book is a great example of just how applicable basic microeconomic principles are to a range of policy issues (even in the often anarchic world of the ocean).

“The general theme of Economics of the Oceans is that property rights are what really matter in the ocean. This will come as no surprise to economists but the stark differences in outcomes across settings that differ primarily in terms of rights may surprise even the most ardent Coaseans. As an illustrative example, Hallwood cleverly compares and contrasts oil with fish. Offshore oil is heavily regulated in most countries with clear property rights and generates significant rents for host governments. Fish populations are poorly regulated in the waters of many countries with unclear property rights and generate little economic rents. Why this has come about and what can be done to remedy this situation is one of the key lessons in Economics of the Oceans.”

John Lynham, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa and Center for Ocean Solutions, Stanford University. (Applied Economics Journal Vol. 21 No. 2 (December 2014): 105-108).5

Professor Hallwood Wins Outstanding Researcher Award

hallwoodProfessor Paul Hallwood last week was awarded the Outstanding Researcher award by the Avery Point Director, Professor Marty Wood.  The prize is awarded annually to faculty including the science departments.

The citations mentioned that Professor Hallwood is the author of 10 books and about 70 papers in refereed journals, and that he is active in applied work – notably in redesigning a tax system for the Scottish government and earlier as an economic advisor to the Government of Saudi Arabia.

Prof. Hallwood’s Press Release

Prof. Paul Hallwood’s (with Professor Ronald MacDonald of University of Glasgow) Press Release on Wednesday of his position paper (submitted to the Smith Commission) outlining a new fiscal settlement for Scotland – following September’s Independence Referendum – had within 24-hours received widespread coverage in the Scottish Press; five newspapers covered it in six reports or editorials. The headlines of the news pieces were: “No Scots bail-out by Westminster, academics warn” (Daily Express), “Pressure mounts on Labour to review tax proposals” and an editorial “Party labours with its powers plan” (The Herald), “Scotland should have to wait 15 years for a bailout it its spends too much” (The Scotsman), “Tight rein on spending needed” (Aberdeen Press and Journal), and “Put up and Shut up” (Daily Record).

Prof. Hallwood’s Position Paper on Rearranging Scottish Finances Released

hallwoodAn excerpt from the Press Release is below.

A copy has been lodged with the Smith Commission on Scottish finances



22 October 2014


An analysis by Professor Paul Hallwood (University of Connecticut) and Professor Ronald MacDonald (University of Glasgow)


Highlighted recommendations include:

  • Block grants from Westminster should not be elastic in the sense that if the Scottish Parliament cannot finance its chosen spending level out of the existing block grant and own-sourced taxes, the block grant is not automatically or quickly increased.
  • Any extra taxes raised by Scotland are not shared with Westminster.
  • If the Scottish Parliament’s tax policy led to a smaller tax base (a shrinking economy), it should have to live with that during the extended period of non-adjustment.
  • Borrowing by the Scottish Government should be regulated.


The fiscal design proposals of all the main Scottish political parties are examined against these criteria. Only those of the Scottish Liberal Democrats and Scottish Conservatives are shown to be workable.

CHOICE reviews Prof. Hallwood

hallwood[1]CHOICE magazine reviewed Professor Hallwood’s Economics of the Oceans: Rights, Rents and Resource, Routledge, Oxford, 2014. It awards the book a “highly recommended” saying: “This unique study combines ecological concepts and neoclassical economic models with case studies to analyze critical problems relating to the oceans. Using the perspectives of law and economics, Hallwood (Univ. of Connecticut) provides both historical context and a discussion of how conflict resolution institutions may help solve problems pertaining to oceans. The book’s parts describe the study’s topical domain: historic wrecks, modern pirates; enclosure; fisheries economics; fisheries regime formation; marine mammals; coral reefs, marine protected areas, wetlands; pollution; and minerals. Each part includes one to four chapters. In every instance, the author couches problems in economic terms: free rider problems relate to maritime piracy; microeconomics concepts apply to resolving maritime boundaries; the Coase theorem applies to fisheries management.”

Profs. Hallwood and Miceli Complete Manuscript

Uconn sealProfessors Paul Hallwood and Thomas Miceli have just completed the manuscript of their book, Maritime Piracy and its Control: An Economic Analysis, which will be published by Palgrave-Macmillan. A brief synopsis follows:

Piracy is the oldest international crime, and in international law pirates are regarded as the ‘enemies of mankind’. While prevalent in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, piracy has not gone away. Today it primarily afflicts the waters off two continents – East and West Africa and Southeast Asian. It is a serious threat to international shipping, and it imposes high financial costs as well as costs in terms of human life and welfare.  Over the last ten years 3,000 or more pirate attacks, actual or attempted, have been reported, with annual costs estimated to be in the range of $6 billion to $7 billion.

The application of economic theory to maritime piracy is a direct application of the economic theory of law enforcement, and relies on two fundamental principles: first, that pirates behave rationally in the sense that they respond to threatened sanctions in deciding whether or not to commit illegal acts, and second, that an enforcement authority (whether under the control of a single government or a coalition of governments) stands ready to enforce those sanctions. With respect to the first of these claims, there is considerable evidence that domestic offenders do in fact respond to threatened punishments.  As for modern-day pirates, the huge material gain that they can earn from their criminal activity is surely an important objective, notwithstanding claims that Somali pirates are acting in response to overfishing and other unfair practices by foreign agents in Somali waters.

As to enforcement, we offer several reasons for the apparent insufficiency of enforcement efforts against maritime piracy. These include the public good nature of law enforcement in general; the high cost of detaining, prosecuting, and incarcerating pirates; and inconsistent (or in some cases non-existent) national laws against piracy. To understand why these problems have been allowed to persist, we examine the main features of international law that governs the conduct of nations, and conclude by reviewing several proposals that have been made for improving international enforcement efforts.  Our hope is that the application of economic theory to maritime piracy will lead to a better understanding of the nature of the problem while improving the quality of the debate regarding alternative responses.