Dr James Martin’s US$50 million matched funding challenge has helped to inspire a commitment by global financier, George Soros, to create a new institute for economics as part of the James Martin 21st Century School. Soros and Martin have each made matching pledges of $US5 million dollars to develop a five-year programme of research that will advance economic thinking and modelling, providing insights to address the recent failures in economic theory and practice.
The new institute will be led by Professor Sir David Hendry, Professorial Fellow at Nuffield College, Oxford, and former head of the Department of Economics. It will also be affiliated with the Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET), which was founded by George Soros last year to support creative thought and open discourse to advance reform in economic thinking and policy worldwide.
Dr Ian Goldin, the Director of the James Martin 21st Century School and a member of INET’s advisory board, commented, “Through its membership of the James Martin 21st Century School, this new institute will benefit from linking up with some of the best minds at Oxford to develop the intellectual and professional capabilities needed to deepen and broaden economic conversations… I am excited that, due to the vision and generosity of George Soros and James Martin, we will be developing an interdisciplinary team of world-class academics able to address these global economic issues.”
The creation of a new institute for economic modelling is one of the first outcomes of a multi-million dollar matched funding scheme launched by Dr James Martin in 2009. His total US$50mn pledge to match new donations to the James Martin 21st Century School over the course of one year was issued as a challenge to individuals, foundations and corporations to share in his original vision. It offered an unparalleled opportunity to energize and integrate research across a broad range of disciplines in Oxford. The final results of the scheme, with information about all the new research Institutes and Programmes that are to become part of the James Martin 21st Century School, will be announced on 28 April 2010.