Two Chicago Booth professors win Kauffman Prize for entrepreneurship research

Erik Hurst and Tobias Moskowitz, professors at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, received the 2012 Ewing Marion Kauffman Prize Medal for Distinguished Research in Entrepreneurship, the school announced Jan. 9.

The prize, which includes a $50,000 award to be shared by both winners, is given in recognition of scholars under the age of 40 whose research has made a significant contribution to entrepreneurship, according to a statement from Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.

Not only have Hurst and Moskowitz done significant work, “they represent the best and brightest up-and-coming leaders in the field of entrepreneurship research who will teach and influence our next generation of academics,” said Robert J. Strom, director of research and policy at the Foundation.


The two Chicago Booth professors were honored for their overall contributions to the field of entrepreneurship rather than one particular research paper. They received the award Jan. 7 at the Allied Social Science Association’s annual meeting in Chicago.

“We are very proud of Erik Hurst and Toby Moskowitz,” said Sunil Kumar, dean of Chicago Booth. “They are terrific researchers and teachers, and are well deserving of this award.” 

“We are also proud to be recognized for entrepreneurship because it has become one of our core strengths,” Kumar said, adding that more than 500 companies have been founded by Booth students and alumni. Since 2009, 13 of the newest companies started in the school’s New Venture Challenge business plan competition received more than $138 million in equity funding, he said.

Previous winners of the Kauffman Prize include Toby Stuart, a former Booth faculty member now at Harvard Business School, and Antoinette Schoar at MIT Sloan.

Hurst is the V. Duane Rath Professor of Economics and the John E. Jeuck Faculty Fellow. An expert in entrepreneurship, macroeconomic policy and housing markets, he researches barriers to entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial finance, and household consumption and financial behavior. During the current academic quarter he is teaching courses in macroeconomics.


Hurst won the 2006 TIAA-CREF Paul A. Samuelson Award for Outstanding Scholarly Writing on Lifelong Financial Security for his article about the transition to retirement titled “Consumption Versus Expenditure,” published in the Journal of Political Economy. His research on leisure trends was covered by The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Economist.

Moskowitz is the Fama Family Professor of Finance. An expert in entrepreneurial finance, financial markets and investments, Moskowitz researches the returns to private business ownership, the incentive contracts and compensation structure of entrepreneurs, the political economy of financial regulation, corporate finance and financial networks. He teaches courses in investments and in empirical asset pricing.

Moskowitz was recognized by the American Finance Association with is 2007 Fischer Black Prize, which honors the top finance scholar under the age of 40. The award cited his “ingenious and careful use of newly available data to address fundamental questions in finance.” He is co-author with L. Jon Wertheim of Scorecasting: The Hidden Influences Behind How Sports Are Played and Games Are Won, a New York Times bestseller.

The Kauffman Prize is one of three academic recognition programs established by the Kauffman Foundation to build a body of respected entrepreneurship research and make entrepreneurship a highly regarded academic field. The other programs are the Kauffman Dissertation Fellowship Program and the Kauffman Junior Faculty Fellowship in Entrepreneurship Research.