posted January 9, 2014

World Christian Lecture Series Continues Thursday

The World Christian Lecture Series of Hope College will feature the address “Doing Good by Doing Well:  From Adam to Adam Smith” by economist Dr. Kenneth G. Elzinga of the University of Virginia on Thursday, Jan. 23, at 7:30 p.m. in Winants Auditorium of Graves Hall.

The public is invited.  Admission is free.

Elzinga is the Robert C. Taylor Professor of Economics at the University of Virginia, where he has taught since 1967. He has also served on the Hope College Board of Trustees since 2006, and was previously on the board from 1983 to 1990.

In 1992, he was given the Thomas Jefferson Award, the highest honor that the University of Virginia accords its faculty.  His introductory economics course attracts more than 1,000 students and is the largest class offered at the University of Virginia.  His Antitrust Policy seminar, which is taught using the Socratic Method, has a reputation as one of the most demanding courses at the university.

Elzinga’s major research interest is antitrust economics, especially pricing strategy and market definition.  He has testified in several precedent-setting antitrust cases, and was the economic expert for the prevailing parties in three Supreme Court cases.

The author of more than 100 academic publications, he is also known for three mystery novels, co-authored with William Breit (under the pen name Marshall Jevons) in which the protagonist employs economic analysis to solve the crime.  The novels have been used in classrooms across the country to illustrate introductory economic principals, and have been translated into seven languages.

A former Fellow in Law and Economics at the University of Chicago and a Thomas Jefferson Visiting Scholar at Cambridge University, Elzinga is also a past president of the Southern Economic Association and a member of Mystery Writers of America.

He has received multiple awards in honor of his teaching and scholarship in addition to the Thomas Jefferson Award, including recognition by the Society of Economic Educators in 2009; the Jefferson Scholars Foundation Faculty Prize from the University of Virginia in 2009; the Patrick Henry Award from the Commonwealth of Virginia in 2001; the Templeton Honor Roll Award for Education in a Free Society from the John Templeton Foundation in 1997; the Kenan Enterprise Award for Teaching Economics from the William R. Kenan Jr. Charitable Trust in 1996; Phi Eta Sigma Teacher of the Year recognition in 1992; the Commonwealth of Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award in 1992; and the Distinguished Professor Award from the University of Virginia in 1979. 

In 1999 he received a Distinguished Alumni Award from Michigan State University, where he had completed both his master's and doctorate. He is a 1963 graduate of Kalamazoo College, which presented him with a Distinguished Alumni Award in 1983 and an honorary degree, an L.H.D., in 2000.

The World Christian Lecture Series invites recognized Christian thinkers and practitioners who are leaders in their respective disciplines to join with the Hope and Holland communities in exploring issues, themes and ideas that face Christians in the world.  The annual series, which debuted in 2008 and is coordinated by the college’s campus ministries office, features a mix of speakers that can include Christian scholars, artists, preachers, politicians, and industry and church leaders.  The series is funded through an endowment at the college established by an anonymous donor who supports Hope College’s continued mission to educate students for global leadership in the context of the historic Christian faith.