Jean-Laurent Rosenthal


Jean-Laurent Rosenthal received a Bachelor's degree in History from Reed College (1984) and a Ph.D. from Caltech in Social Science (1988). He was awarded the Clauser Dissertation Prize at Caltech in 1988, an NSF young investigator award in 1992 and a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2001. He taught at UCLA's Department of Economics from 1988 to 2006. He is currently the Co-Editor of the Journal of Economic History.

His research focuses on understanding what institutions encourage economic growth and wealth formation. More specifically investigations have included changes in property rights at the time of the French Revolution, on credit markets in Europe, on law and the organization of enterprises (France, Germany, U.S. and U.K), and on wealth inequality. He is the author or co-author of several books including
Before and Beyond Divergence; Institutions and Prosperity in China and Europe 1000-1800 (with R. Bin Wong, Harvard University Press, 2011) and Surviving Large Losses: Financial Crises, the Middle Class, and the Development of Capital Markets. (with Philip T. Hoffman and Gilles Postel-Vinay. Harvard University Press. Spring 2007).

Rea A. and Lela G. Axline Professor of Business Economics

California Institute of Technology



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Mail Code: 228-77

Office: 133 Baxter

Phone: 1+ (626) 395-4058

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California Institute of Technology

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Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences


California Institute of Technology