The 2015 Nobel Prize in economics was awarded in October to Angus Deaton, who has conducted extensive research in the areas of consumption, poverty, and well-being. Deaton is the Dwight D. Eisenhower professor of economics and international affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University in New Jersey. The award carries with it a prize of 8 million Swedish krona (about US$979,000).
According to the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, which selects the prize winners, Deaton’s work revolves around three central questions: How do consumers distribute their spending among different goods? How much of society’s income is spent, and how much is saved? How do we measure and analyze welfare and poverty? In his 2013 book, The Great Escape: Health, Wealth and the Origins of Inequality, Deaton traces the great innovations in science and technology that have contributed to the well-being of nations—but points out that, because many of these inventions are available only to the wealthy, they have contributed to global inequality. He also examines how economic growth currently operates in nations such as the U.S. and India, and discusses how to address continuing inequalities.