Oliver Hart

Oliver Hart is currently the Lewis P. and Linda L. Geyser University Professor at Harvard University, where he has taught since 1993. He is the 2016 co-recipient of the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, a Fellow of the Econometric Society, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the British Academy, and the American Finance Association, a member of the National Academy of Sciences, a Distinguished Fellow of the American Economic Association, and has several honorary degrees.

Shareholders Don’t Always Want to Maximize Shareholder Value

Oliver Hart, winner of the 2016 Nobel Prize for economics, reflects on how the world has changed since Milton Friedman published his famous essay...

Serving Shareholders Doesn’t Mean Putting Profit Above All Else

The time has come for companies, economists, and society to abandon the argument that the only responsibility of business is to maximize profits. Editor’s note:...

A Small Step for Theory, a Leap Forward in Corporate Governance

Moving from shareholder value maximization to shareholder welfare maximization may be a small step in theory, but it could trigger a leap forward in...

Latest news

Reversing the “Resource Curse” with Foreign Corruption Regulation

Anti-corruption regulation originating in developed countries is effective in changing corporate behavior and has a positive economic impact on developing countries.

The Death of Hong Kong’s Rule of Law

Hong Kong's rule of law has suffered a fatal blow. With the national security law, the authoritarian regime has all that it...

President-Elect Joe Biden and the Real Lessons of DuPont

Simply talking corporate America into being more responsible is not enough. It may get corporations to talk the talk, but not to...

How Companies Spin Off Environmental Liabilities to Avoid Legal Obligations

Environmental externalities are vexing for corporate decision makers, but some companies have figured out a way to deal with them: a spinoff....

How Pfizer’s Vaccine Announcement Demonstrates the Political Power of Firms

By timing the disclosure of the results of its vaccine trial, Pfizer could have influenced the 2020 presidential election. This is worrisome...

The Useful Distraction of Section 230

How the red-herring of a politicized Section 230 and “conservative censorship” distracts from a bipartisan national privacy act.

Institution Man: How Corporations Came to Dominate the US Economy

In the first chapter of his book Transaction Man, Nicholas Lemann explores how Adolf Berle, author of The Modern Corporation and Private...