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莫志宏

北京工业大学副教授,九鼎公共事务研究所研究员,华人哈耶克学会会员,从事宪政经济学和制度经济学研究。

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My experience at 2011 Austrian Scholars Conference (ASC)  

2011-03-17 20:01:09|  分类: 其他 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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      2011 Austrian scholars conference was held at Mises Institute, March 10-12, Auburn, Alabama. I was honored to be invited to attend such a conference, and present my paper on Coase. This was the first time of my visiting the States, also the first time attending an international conference in the true sense. I was both excited and nervous.

Several aspects of this conference impressed me a lot. First, the participants of it came from basically every corner of the world, and most of them attended such a conference mainly out of interest. There were people from Brazil, Guatemala, Indian, Croatia, Canadian, British, etc. And these people are from very different walks of life, some are student, some are official bureaucrat, e.g. policeman, some are programmer. I heard several times people saying that they learn economics just as a hobby and came to this conference for the purpose of learning something helpful for their career.

Second, most of the participants were both attentive listener, and enthusiastic speaker. Generally, the speaker and the listeners have a very lively interaction between them. When the speaker talked about something interesting, listeners would respond with applause or sympathetic laughing, and when the speaker finished his speech challenging questions would be waiting for him, which sometimes was proposed in a very lively and humorous way.

A case that impressed me (and presumably so many people there) most is that, a son and a father collaborated to present their study on US Agricultural Subsidies. Their public spirit, the tacit mutual understanding between them, and their dedicated attitude toward what they are doing, are so moving. I did not come up to say anything to them, but I knew I was really deeply moved.

 

My presentation at this conference was titled: “Is harm of a reciprocal nature? On the outcome equilibrium thinking behind Coase’s reciprocal thesis”. I do not think I have done a really good job, since I am not so confident of my English, and I know the content of my presentation is not familiar to general audience. But to my surprise, after my presentation I received so many encouraging words, and so many people came up to me just for the seek of telling me how they are impressed by my speech. All this makes me feel so happy, and I cannot help thinking, maybe this is the American way of dealing with people, and we Chinese should get to learn this.   

I wish next year there would be more Chinese scholars at ASC, not just me. And I firmly believe the ideas in Austrian economics would greatly benefit China in the future.  

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