Professorships at MIT: Stephen Morris

(Stephen Morris)
Peter A. Diamond Professor in Economics
School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences

The PhD program at the MIT economics department is perhaps the best in the world,” says Stephen Morris, the inaugural recipient of the Peter A. Diamond Professorship in Economics, created by a gift from economics alumnus C.C. Chen ’63, SM ’65, PhD ’67.

An economic theorist, Morris notes that the department has “a huge focus on and investment in our students.” He enjoys supporting graduate students in their research while pursuing his own. His research centers on strategic aspects of economics: anticipating how market participants such as investors and traders will respond to policy changes and other economic events.

Morris views the economics department as a shining example of MIT’s interdisciplinary, collaborative approach to discovery. “It’s an intellectually integrated department—everyone is engaged with what’s happening in all the groups.”

He is particularly proud of a course for second-year PhD students, 14.192 Advanced Research and Communication, which he created and teaches jointly with Esther Duflo PhD ’99, the Abdul Latif Jameel Professor in Poverty Alleviation and Development Economics at MIT and co-winner of the 2019 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences. Because students are encouraged to begin their own research early in the program, the new course helps equip them to write research papers and publish important findings earlier in their academic careers.

Morris says, “Because of MIT, I’ve rethought graduate education and how it works.”

Meet more MIT professorship recipients.

—Christine Thielman

This article was originally published in July 2021.