The committee bestowed some respect
On the science of cause and effect
With a new Nobel prize
For a couple of guys
Who proved that it's hard to project.
The 2011 Sveriges Riksbank Economics Prize in Memory of Alfred Nobel has been awarded to two Americans who have done pioneering work on the effects of government policy on the macroeconomy. Thomas Sargent of NYU and Christopher Sims of Princeton (pictured right above and below respectively), who were classmates at Harvard and now teach a course together at Princeton, have worked mostly separately and often disagree; the Nobel committee felt that their different approaches were complementary. Mr. Sargent developed complex models to predict the behavior of the economy, while Mr. Sims is skeptical of such models and has focused on direct analysis of economic data.