Prof. Michael Hoel is the winner of the 2011 edition of the EAERE European Lifetime Achievement Award in Environmental Economics. EAERE has conferred this Award to Prof. Hoel as a way of public recognition of his contribution to the development of environmental economics. His contribution has been particularly noteworthy in bringing environmental concerns to the research agenda of mainstream economics, and in demonstrating the suitability of the economic analysis tools in the areas of environmental policy.
Michael Hoel was born in Edinburgh, UK, 7th March, 1947. He moved quite early in life to Norway and straddles both cultures. Since 1981 he has been Professor of Economics at the University of Oslo.
He is first and foremost a prominent researcher but also an inspiring teacher and a person who has an interest in environmental policy. As a researcher, he is the author of a large number of seminal research articles that are very widely cited and cover an impressive array of subjects including game theory, analysis of international environmental negotiations and treaties, domestic and international policy instrument design under uncertainty and optimal resource use. Among the most prominent are the following:
1) Hoel, M. (1991). “Global Environmental-Problems – The Effects of Unilateral Actions Taken by One Country.” Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, 20, 55-70.
2) Hoel, M. (1992). “International Environment Conventions: The Case of Uniform Reductions of Emissions.” Environmental and Resource Economics, 2, 141-159.
3) Dixit, A., Hammond, P. and Hoel, M. (1980). “On Hartwick’s Rule for Regular Maximin Paths of Capital Accumulation and Resource Depletion.” Review of Economic Studies, 47, 551-556.
4) Hoel, M. and Karp, L. (2001). “Taxes and Quotas for a Stock Pollutant with Multiplicative Uncertainty.” Journal of Public Economics, 82, 91-114.
5) Hoel, M. (1997). “Environmental Policy with Endogenous Plant Locations.” Scandinavian Journal of Economics, 99, 241-259.
This brief selection of Michael Hoel’s academic can only give an inkling of the strong influence he has had during the last thirty years on economic analysis in general and on environmental economics in particular.
It is particularly striking to see that prof. Hoel combines writing in very good journals and getting very high citation numbers. Several of the papers above have hundreds of citations each in Google Scholar and very high numbers also in the more restrictive ISI Web of Science count. In addition to his research, he is a much appreciated lecturer and tutor at the University of Oslo and has helped many young economists on the start of their careers. He has participated actively in the Norwegian public debate and has been a member of several Government-appointed expert committees.
He has also been very active in the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters, where he led an international group of researchers – including many EAERE members – and in a one-year research project on Environmental Economics at the Centre for Advanced Study during the Academic Year 2005-2006. In 1996 he received the International Association for Energy Economics’ Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Profession of Energy Economics and to its Literature; in 1997 he won the Research Prize at the University of Oslo; in 2000 he was awarded the Erik Kempe Award in Environmental and Resource Economics. Michael Hoel is also a Honorary Doctor at the Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg. Not the least, he is a very competent and avid skier, climber and snowboarder.
Michael Hoel has always been a keen supporter of EAERE. He was a Council member twice, co-chair of the programme committee of the association’s annual conference in 1999, programme committee member many times. He was a faculty member in the EAERE-FEEM-VIU European Summer School 2001.