Economic historian Douglass C. North, professor of economics at the University of Washington, spoke on “The Prospects and Limitations of Applying Neo-classical Theory to History.”  Professor North’s Structure and Change in Economic History was published in 1981.

In 1991, Professor North was the first economic historian to be honored with the John R. Commons Award, established in 1965 by the International Honors Society for Economics. He and Harvard University Professor Robert Fogel shared the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences in 1993 “for having” in the words of the Nobel committee, “renewed research in economic history by applying economic theory and quantitative methods in order to explain economic and institutional change.”