Wassily Leontief

About Wassily Leontief

Who is it?: Nobel Prize Winner in Economics
Birth Day: August 05, 1906
Birth Place: Munich, Germany, Russian
Citizenship: Russian Empire, Soviet Union, United States
Alma mater: University of Berlin, (PhD) University of Leningrad, (MA)
Known for: Input-output analysis
Awards: Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences (1973)
Fields: Economics
Institutions: University of Kiel New York University Harvard University
Doctoral advisor: Ladislaus Bortkiewicz Werner Sombart
Doctoral students: Paul Samuelson Thomas Schelling Robert Solow Kenneth E. Iverson Vernon L. Smith Richard E. Quandt Hyman Minsky Khodadad Farmanfarmaian Dale W. Jorgenson Michael C. Lovell Karen R. Polenske
Influences: Léon Walras
Influenced: George B. Dantzig

Wassily Leontief

Wassily Leontief was born on August 05, 1906 in Munich, Germany, Russian, is Nobel Prize Winner in Economics. Wassily Wassilyovich Leontief was a Russian-American economist renowned for his input–output theory of capital for which he received the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in the year 1973. His works in general and the input–output theory in particular were instrumental in understanding how the output of a particular sector influenced another sector of the economy. His studies transcended the bridge that economists tended to keep with raw empirical data during his time. He also put in efforts to make data available for further studies in future. Another facet of his studies was the use of computers at a time when most studies relied on theoretical suppositions. Apart from a meticulous researcher, he was also a great teacher, training four future Nobel Laureates during his years at Harvard. Towards the end of his career, he moved to the New York University, where he continued with his research work until the age of eighty-five, teaching there even after his retirement well into his nineties. He was widely recognized for his works as was evident by his memberships in many eminent societies and institutions. He was a thinker; but believed that theories were no good unless they were backed by facts.
Wassily Leontief is a member of Intellectuals & Academics

Does Wassily Leontief Dead or Alive?

As per our current Database, Wassily Leontief has been died on February 5, 1999(1999-02-05) (aged 93)\nNew York City, United States.

🎂 Wassily Leontief - Age, Bio, Faces and Birthday

When Wassily Leontief die, Wassily Leontief was 93 years old.

Popular As Wassily Leontief
Occupation Intellectuals & Academics
Age 93 years old
Zodiac Sign Virgo
Born August 05, 1906 (Munich, Germany, Russian)
Birthday August 05
Town/City Munich, Germany, Russian
Nationality Russian

🌙 Zodiac

Wassily Leontief’s zodiac sign is Virgo. According to astrologers, Virgos are always paying attention to the smallest details and their deep sense of humanity makes them one of the most careful signs of the zodiac. Their methodical approach to life ensures that nothing is left to chance, and although they are often tender, their heart might be closed for the outer world. This is a sign often misunderstood, not because they lack the ability to express, but because they won’t accept their feelings as valid, true, or even relevant when opposed to reason. The symbolism behind the name speaks well of their nature, born with a feeling they are experiencing everything for the first time.

🌙 Chinese Zodiac Signs

Wassily Leontief was born in the Year of the Horse. Those born under the Chinese Zodiac sign of the Horse love to roam free. They’re energetic, self-reliant, money-wise, and they enjoy traveling, love and intimacy. They’re great at seducing, sharp-witted, impatient and sometimes seen as a drifter. Compatible with Dog or Tiger.

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Famous Quotes:

Much of current academic teaching and research has been critizied for its lack of relevance, that is, of immediate practical impact. ... The trouble is caused, however, not by an inadequate selection of targets, but rather by our inability to hit squarely on them, ... by the palpable inadequacy of the scientific means with which they try to solve them. ... The weak and all too slowly growing empirical foundations clearly cannot support the proliferating superstructure of pure, or should I say, speculative economic theory.... By the time it comes to interpretations of the substantive conclusions, the assumptions on which the model has been based are easily forgotten. But it is precisely the empirical validity of these assumptions on which the usefulness of the entire exercise depends. ... A natural Darwinian feedback operating through selection of academic personnel contributes greatly to the perpetuation of this state of affairs.



Wassily Leontief was born on August 5, 1905, in Munich, Germany, the son of Wassily W. Leontief (professor of Economics) and Zlata (German spelling Slata; later Evgenia) Leontief (née Becker). W. Leontief, Sr., belonged to a family of old-believer merchants living in St. Petersburg since 1741. Genya Becker belonged to a wealthy Jewish family from Odessa. At 15 in 1921, Wassily, Jr., entered University of Leningrad in present-day St. Petersburg. He earned his Learned Economist degree (equivalent to Master of Arts) in 1924 at the age of 19.


Leontief sided with campaigners for academic autonomy, freedom of speech and in support of Pitirim Sorokin. As a Consequence, he was detained several times by the Cheka. In 1925, he was allowed to leave the USSR, mostly because the Cheka believed that he was mortally ill with a sarcoma, a diagnosis that later proved false. He continued his studies at the University of Berlin and, in 1928 earned a Ph.D. degree in economics under the direction of Werner Sombart, writing his dissertation on The Economy as Circular Flow (original German title: Die Wirtschaft als Kreislauf).


From 1927 to 1930, he worked at the Institute for the World Economy of the University of Kiel. There he researched the derivation of statistical demand and supply curves. In 1929, he traveled to China to assist its ministry of railroads as an advisor.


In 1931, he went to the United States and was employed by the National Bureau of Economic Research.


In 1932, Leontief married poet Estelle Marks. Their only child, Svetlana Leontief Alpers, was born in 1936. Leontief's wife Estelle wrote a memoir, Genia and Wassily, of their relations with his parents after they came to the US as emigres.


Leontief set up the Harvard Economic Research Project in 1948 and remained its Director until 1973. Starting in 1965, he chaired the Harvard Society of Fellows.


In 1949, Leontief used an early computer at Harvard and data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics to divide the U.S. economy into 500 sectors. Leontief modeled each sector with a linear equation based on the data and used the computer, the Harvard Mark II, to solve the system, one of the first significant uses of computers for mathematical modeling, along with George W. Snedecor's usage of the Atanasoff–Berry computer.


As hobbies Leontief enjoyed fly fishing, ballet, and fine wines. He vacationed for years at his farm in West Burke, Vermont, but after moving to New York in the 1970s moved his summer residence to Lakeville, Connecticut.


In 1975, Leontief joined New York University and founded and directed the Institute for Economic Analysis. He taught graduate and undergraduate classes.


Leontief died in New York City on Friday, February 5, 1999 at the age of 93. His wife died in 2005.


Leontief earned the Nobel Prize in economics for his work on input-output tables. Input-output tables analyze the process by which inputs from one industry produce outputs for consumption or for inputs for another industry. With the input-output table, one can estimate the change in demand for inputs resulting from a change in production of the final good. The analysis assumes that input proportions are fixed; thus the use of input-output analysis is limited to rough approximations rather than prediction. Input-output was novel and inspired large-scale empirical work; in 2010 its iterative method was recognized as an early intellectual precursor to Google's PageRank.

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