H-SC Students Attend APEE

April 15, 2011

ParticipantsOn April 10th, (students left to right) Will Carter '12, Crawford Simpkins '12, Barrett Polan ’12, and Alex Cartwright ’13 attended the annual Association for Private Enterprise Education (APEE) Conference in Nassau, Bahamas, with their Center for the Study of the Political Economy Advisors Professors Jennifer Dirmeyer and Justin Isaacs '95 (not pictured).  At the conference, the students had the opportunity to attend lectures from renowned economists Dr. Peter Boettke, Dr. Peter Leeson and Nobel Prize Winning economist Dr. Elinor Ostrum among many others.

APEE was established in 1963 as an organization dedicated to promoting the effective teaching of economics principles as they relate to the social prosperity.  Each year the association hosts conferences, supports a journal, and recognizes scholars whose work has contributed to the use of economics to address social problems.  This year's Adam Smith Award, given to an individual who has made a sustained and lasting contribution to the perpetuation of the ideals of a free market economy as first laid out in Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations, was given to Eleanor Ostrom, 2009 winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics.

This year's conference had over 350 attendees coming together around the theme of "Institutional Evolution Toward Freedom and Prosperity.”  Dr. Ostrum was the keynote speaker for the conference, and she spoke about her internationally renowned work on economic governance.

This year APEE introduced the Undergraduate Research Competition in order to encourage active scholarship from undergraduate students.  In total over 20 undergraduate projects were selected from eight different Colleges and Universities, including Rhodes College, Weslyen College, Hillsdale College, and George Mason University.  Hampden-Sydney was well represented by our students.  Feedback from conference scholars was overwhelmingly positive especially with regard to the professionalism, preparedness, and understanding of argumentation that the Hampden-Sydney students demonstrated on research which ranged from the effects of legalizing prostitution on disease prevalence to providing solutions to the health care crisis.

Alex Cartwright '13 won first prize in the Undergraduate Research Competition at the conference for his paper, "Freer Markets, Fewer Surprises: The Role of Asymmetric Information in the Market for Prostitution."  He wrote the paper as a member of Prof. Jennifer Dirmeyer's Economics Writing Workshop in the Spring 2011 semester.