Todd R. Kaplan’s Memories

Todd R. Kaplan is a professor of economics at the University of Haifa and the University of Exeter.

From an email:

There are two “mysteries” that I would like to solve for you. First, Eric Maskin reports a message from Sarah about the students following him (page 143). I am positive that this comes from me and my conversation with Sarah at the Dead Sea. I still remember Leo trying to get Sarah to take a picture of him in the Dead Sea reading a newspaper. (He actually didn’t go in far enough to fully float.) I don’t know if that picture still exists.

Second, Herb Mohring mentioned a very smart Israeli student who checked his paper for mistakes (page 161). This student is my coauthor, David Wettstein, who just finished being the Dean at BGU. [Ben-Gurion University, Beersheba, Israel. mh]

I am not sure you are aware, but when I was in Minnesota. Leo commanded all the respect of macroeconomists at Minnesota who were dominant during my time there. This is extremely unusual for any Economics Department.

I do have a suggestion for part 2. It might take some time, but Leo had a HUGE impact through his PhD students. They did amazing things. (Many of them are listed here.)

Note: David [Wettstein] was his PhD student, but I was not. Still, one of my most amazing experiences during Minnesota was having him advise me on a prelim revision. All the other students just told me to forget about completing it and retake the prelim. You would never finish it with Hurwicz. I figured to give it my best shot. I was surprised how many mistakes I would make. I would do my best and he would send me back to rework it. Usually with a classic book that was signed “Dear Leo, thanks for …..” I was scared to damage the books, but still read them. This lasted months. Finally, Leo said I passed and I was disappointed since I wanted to continue.

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