Each year since 2001, CEI pays tribute to free-market economist, professor, and consummate optimist Julian Simon by presenting the Julian L. Simon Memorial Award to an individual whose work supports Simon’s vision of mankind as the ultimate resource. This year, CEI is pleased to honor Dr. Steven Horwitz, Director of the Institute for the Study of Political Economy and Distinguished Professor of Free Enterprise at Ball State University, as the 2020 Julian L. Simon Memorial Award Winner.

Professor Steven Horwitz extends Simon’s legacy with an exemplary teaching career and thorough empirical investigation of labor saving innovations in the modern economy. He is a testament to the power of open dialogue, the importance of liberal institutions, and the belief that tomorrow can be better than yesterday.

Please join CEI for a video presentation of the 2020 Simon Award and a live discussion with Steve Horwitz, in conversation with Kent Lassman.


Wednesday, September 30, 2020

12:00 – 1:00 pm EDT

Register: https://cei-org.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_m5PZFdZ6RlmYJAKgYug5yQ

Registration confirmation and event reminder emails will be sent from CEI Events at [email protected] 

Questions? Email [email protected]


AnchorSteven Horwitz is Director of the Institute for the Study of Political Economy and Distinguished Professor of Free Enterprise in the Department of Economics at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. A member of the Mont Pelerin Society, he has a PhD in Economics from George Mason University and an AB in Economics and Philosophy from The University of Michigan.

Horwitz is the author of four books, Monetary Evolution, Free Banking, and Economic Order (Westview, 1992), Microfoundations and Macroeconomics: An Austrian Perspective (Routledge, 2000), Hayek’s Modern Family: Classical Liberalism and the Evolution of Social Institutions (Palgrave Macmillan, 2015), and Austrian Economics: An Introduction (Libertarianism.org, 2020). He has written extensively on Austrian economics, Hayekian political economy, monetary theory and history, and American economic history. His work has been published in professional journals such as History of Political Economy, Southern Economic Journal, and The Cambridge Journal of Economics.

Horwitz is also an Affiliated Senior Scholar at the Mercatus Center in Arlington, VA, a Senior Fellow at the Fraser Institute in Canada, and economics editor at the Cato Institute’s Libertarianism.org. He has done public policy research for the Mercatus Center, Heartland Institute, and the Cato Institute, and has been a guest on several radio and cable TV shows. Horwitz has spoken to professional, student, policymaker, and general audiences throughout North America, as well as in Europe, Asia, and South America.

Prior to Ball State, he taught for 28 years at St. Lawrence University in New York, where he is Professor of Economics Emeritus.

Julian L. Simon Memorial Award

Julian L. Simon (1932-1998) was an economist and business professor known for his optimism about mankind and the future. His groundbreaking research demonstrated how human ingenuity can support the world’s increasing population with decreasing impact on the environment. Simon authored the 1981 classic The Ultimate Resource, which debunked eco-doomsayers’ predictions that modern civilization is unsustainable. Over the years, he argued that humans are living longer, resources are more abundant, and environmental quality is improving.

To honor Simon’s achievements, CEI established the Julian L. Simon Memorial Award in 2001. The recipient of the prize is an individual whose work continues to promote the vision of man as the ultimate resource. The distinguished cadre of past honorees include most recently, Johan Norberg, Hernando de Soto, Dr. Pierre Desrochers, Dr. Bruce Yandle, Dr. Vernon Smith, and John Tierney.

The award itself is forged in the shape of a leaf. Simon admired nature and included dried leaves—which die every fall and are renewed every spring—in his correspondence. The veins of the leaf are chromium, copper, nickel, tin, and tungsten—the five metals featured in the famous 1980 bet with The Population Bomb doomsayer Paul Ehrlich. Based on his positive theory about natural resources, Simon bet Ehrlich the price of the metals would decline over a decade even if the world’s population grew. Ten years later, Julian Simon won the bet.

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