Economist wins international award

Dr. Sebastian Berger, assistant professor of economics, was recently honored with an international economics award. The 2008 Helen Potter Award of Special Recognition was presented to Berger by the Association for Social Economics for the most original article by a promising scholar.

The article was published in the September 2008 issue of Review of Social Economy. "Karl Polanyi's and Karl William Kapp's Substantive Economics: Important Insights from the Kapp-Polanyi Correspondence," was written when Berger taught at the University of Missouri Kansas City. He joined Roanoke College in the fall of 2008.

"It's an incredibly impressive thing for our students to have a professor who has been recognized internationally for research," says Dr. Larry Lynch, chairman of the business administration and economics department. "I don't know that our students know about it - it's not that we tell them he won this award," Lynch adds. "It's just that it shows the caliber of faculty members we have teaching our students."

Berger found unpublished letters of the two economists in an archive in Switzerland. The research sheds new light to the field of substantive economics and the relationship between the two economists. Most importantly, Berger's research highlights the importance of historical and anthropological economics for understanding the modern economy. Emerging from this field of inquiry are questions such as "Is it ‘natural' for humans to be a means to the economy?" and "How can the economy be re-embedded into ecological and cultural relations to guarantee the satisfaction of substantive human needs?"

"Winning the Helen Potter Award confirms what everyone acquainted with Dr. Berger already knows: he is an excellent scholar who cares about the big issues facing humanity," Dr. Edward Nik-Khah, assistant professor of economics, said. "We are fortunate to have as a colleague someone who is so highly esteemed in his field. Roanoke students are fortunate for the opportunity to learn about economics from someone who is at the cutting edge of the field."

Berger earned the Ph.D. from Bremen University in Germany. He holds a master's in business administration as well as a bachelor's degree from Chemnitz University of Technology.

Released: February 27, 2009
Contact Name: Public Relations
Contact Phone: (540) 375-2282
Contact Email: gereaux@roanoke.edu