Little more than a historical oddity, this haphazardly chronicles selected academic trips. Of course I recognize that the world wide demand for my dated academic experiences will be modest at best but thanks for looking.
In a first trip since COVID, I was a keynote in a conference in Aberdeen Scotland organized by friend and former colleague Keith Bender. The conference, “Interdisciplinary Approaches to Performance Related Pay and Incentives at Work” was very good. I especially enjoyed a walk above Loch Ness and the wonderful hospitality of the Bender Family!
November found me in St. John’s Newfoundland thanks to Tony Fang. I gave a seminar, had a delightful visit, ate cod tongues and learned lots. I also found myself on the local CBC radio discussing performance pay and substance use!
Check it out:
Does Paying for Performance Lead to Increased Alcohol and Drug Use?
I have been meaning for ages to get my dear friend Colin Green in this display. I visited his charming family in June and found Trondheim Norway lovely. Here is Colin on the streets of Trondheim multitasking as always — working on one of our papers and enjoying his beer!
I was very pleased to be the keynote speaker at the Third Annual Workshop on Mixed Oligopoly at the University of Tokyo. Many thanks to Professor Toshihiro Matsumura.
In March I participated in a workshop on Industrial Organization and Competition Policy in Beijing. It was a great opportunity to reconnect with two former PhD students, Guangliang Ye (2006) and Zheng Wang (2014). Here we all tour the Forbidden City (yes, the matching shirts was my idea).
In July and early August, I visited Korea to climb a mountain and participate in a conference. Then went on to Hong Kong to see my good friend Xiangdong and his family. Between sessions working on the implicit costs of providing family friendly work practices, I prevailed on Xiangdong to walk around the lakes and hills of Hong Kong; a hot hike in a beautiful spot. Together with our mutual mentor Stan we visited Guangzhou in mainland China. We ate on the banks of the Pearl River. Loved the bean curd!
Melbourne captures my imagination more than most towns and January of 2005 saw my return to the capital of Victoria. This good fortune resulted from a sabbatical and the generosity of my dear friend Michelle Brown and her department at the University of Melbourne. We completed work on the Australian use of performance appraisals and pushed forward on a second project. Michelle’s daughter Keely continues to charm and delight — although she is now both older and wiser than she was in this picture. In the middle of working away, I vanished for six days to Tasmania. Hiking to the top of Cradle Mountain was surely a highlight. I started at the headquarters, hiked up the valley, followed the creek around Dove Lake and then on to the summit — nine hours return this route but well worth it! A second long hike had me up at early dawn and taking a small launch the length of Lake St. Clair. This lake (the second deepest in the Southern Hemisphere) is in the middle of a lush temperate rain forest and is surrounded by old volcanoes.
The hike back along the lake gave beautiful views of Mt. Ida on the other side. I hiked across huge sand dunes to reach a deserted beach on the West Coast. I enjoyed numerous waterfalls and rushing rivers. I walked atop 1000 feet cliffs overlooking the Pacific. Those interested in the connections between the huge national park in Southwest Tasmania and central Wisconsin might read my regular column in the February 2005 Twin Lakes Conservancy Newsletter. In short, I had a fabulous time and would like to remind anyone reading from the University of Tasmania that I am available upon short notice if there is any way I can be of assistance.
Early Spring 2005
In March 2005, I visited Kirsten in New Orleans. We researched the hiring patterns for older UK workers. Note the three computers for two researchers working hard. One night Kirsten went home early and I took off to see Marva Wright and her fantastic blues band. After Marva and I become best friends, she let me take her picture between sets Marva. Loved the Live Oaks in Audubon Park!
Late Spring 2005
Tony Fang was working at Statistics Canada when I contacted him about using the Workplace Employment Survey. We met at the annual meetings that year in San Diego and began a couple of projects. What should I hear next but that he’d taken a position at the University of Northern British Columbia (great job done by the model, eh) and would I like to visit? While in Prince George we worked on the determinants of Canadian Plant Closure and I got to hike a couple times in the Canadian Rockies. Loved seeing all the bears!
While I’d visited briefly at the University of Hannover, I hadn’t taught or lived there with the family. All great fun, made more so by the charms of Uwe Jirjahn, my host and friend. Together with Georgi Tservarzde we wrote a paper on the sources of chronic German high unemployment among older workers (usually highest among the EU-15). I enjoyed teaching a class on international labor economics to a couple dozen Hannover students and felt at ease in the daily life of the department.
A most special day was spent with the family hiking the 15 miles roundtrip up the Bodetal from the Waldkater Pension to Tereseburg. The roaring river, the thick green canopy and the rocky canyon made for a fabulous walk up to lunch beside the suddenly peaceful stream on the plateau. By far the best spot in the Harz Mountains! The trout was very nice.
We also took a few days in Spain to visit the amazing small city of Ronda. This Moorish town retains the fabulous old bridges, gardens and homes of that period. Home to Spain’s oldest bullring, it remains a tight set of narrow streets perched on a rock bluff surrounded by Mountains. When the setting is combined with the history and the casual lifestyle, one understands why Ronda was a frequent haunt of the likes of Hemingway and Rilke.
After finishing up in Hannover, the family headed for Birmingham England where I participated in the annual “summer camp,” ten days of writing, computing, discussing and fun. Xiangdong, Stan and I have been meeting this way for more than a decade (note Stan in his Mr. Chips robes).
Early Fall 2005
Just as classes began, I hurried to Norway for a quick visit with my former student Ken Fjell who teaches at the Norweign School of Economics and Business Administration in Bergen. In addition to presenting a paper and working on joint research with Ken, it was an opportunity for a reunion with Debashis Pal, a good friend and very clever researcher! The three of us were able to tour a fjord or two, eats lots of great salmon and enjoy each other’s company.
I’ve not been as good at keeping up the site but I’m determined to continue to make additions. The early summer saw me visiting Lancaster University in the Northwest of England for two weeks. It afforded the opportunity to catch-up with Bob Rothschild and to meet new friends. I was lucky enough to be taken into the Lake District by Jim Taylor for great hikes up Helvellen and the Langdale Pikes.
Early Summer 2007
I spent another couple weeks in Britain at the usual “summer school” that Stan, Xiangdong and I have run every year since 1994. This year Stan, his son Robbie and I got a couple days head start and put it to good use hiking in Wales. Made it up Mt. Snowden on the steep accent during a day that had everything from pouring rain to glorious warm sun. With the highest peaks of both England and Wales now completed, Ben Nevis obviously calls. Any Scottish economists up for the climb please give me a ring.
The time at Birmingham consisted of revising a paper, listening to three Ph.D. candidates in labor economics give presentations in successive days and plotting some new work. The Birmingham Business School has big plans for success and it remains fun to participate.
Late Summer 2007
The second six weeks of the summer saw the entire family return to Melbourne where I was the Miegunyah Distinguished Fellow in residence at Trinty College of the University of Melbourne. Take a look at the entire family in our gowns for high table! Michelle and I worked on two projects including one examining the influence of performance pay on helping effort in Australian banks. I gave a public lecture on performance pay and unions to more than 150 brave souls from the university and the community (condensed version).