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Alumni in Action

Shedding Light on the Economy

Faculty excellence fosters learning

By Alumni Relations

February 18, 2015

randall wrightMost economists don’t debate the purpose of money. But Randall Wright, the Wisconsin School of Business’s Professor of Liquid Assets, isn’t like most economists. A thought leader in his field, Wright is known for breaking complex issues into simple terms, using pizza and beer to explain intricate sets of equations.

With a distinctively accessible teaching style, Wright is known for making real-world issues understandable by analyzing and exploring such questions as, “What purpose does money serve?” “Why do banks exist?” and “How can unemployment and job vacancies coexist in the same economy?” Ultimately, his research may help us understand how unemployment and vacant jobs can coexist, making the process of reducing unemployment more seamless and improving the efficiency of our economy.

Wright is changing the lens through which students view the world, and his impact on teaching and applying economics is immeasurable. His ideas are heard by fellow teachers, researchers, and more than 25,000 students across the globe via a massive open online course. By presenting his material—which isn’t available in textbooks—without the constraints of standard classrooms or a traditional syllabus, Wright is able to create a rare case of limitless supply actually increasing demand.

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