James Dean Award

The James Dean Award is awarded to the student with the best ECON 900 paper. This award is named after the late emeritus professor James Dean, who has held visitng appointments at approximately 25 universities and research institutions worldwide, in addition to his appointment at Simon Fraser University.

2023 -  Kiarash Hosseini

Kiarash Hosseini is a PhD student in economics at SFU. He is an applied microeconomist in the fields of labor economics and development economics. The awarded working paper examines the impact of 3G Internet access in Iran on female labor force participation. Kiarash is currently expanding his expertise in algorithm design, data structures, and big data to effectively employ machine learning algorithms in his forthcoming research project. Besides his academic research, Kiarash enjoys teaching and taking complex ideas and breaking them down into understandable explanations for students.

Past winners

2022: Hung Truong 

Hung Truong is a Ph.D. student at SFU Economics. His research interests are behavioral macroeconomics with a focus on monetary policy. His dedication to macroeconomics is inspired by the enthusiastic macroeconomics faculty at SFU Economics. The awarded paper, co-authored with Professor Jasmina Arifovic and Associate Professor Isabelle Salle, explores the practicality of a theoretically sound monetary policy in response to turbulent courses of inflation. He is currently a teaching assistant and workshop instructor at SFU teaching economics courses and programming languages for data science. He enjoys both researching and teaching, and is planning to work in academia or the government sector after completing his doctoral study.

2021: Huiqian Song

Huiqian Song is a PhD student in economics at SFU. She earned both BA and MA at Simon Fraser University. Her research interests lie primarily in applied economics with more focus on institutional economics and property rights. The awarded paper, working with Liang Diao, shows that the land cadastre enhances land value, thereby encouraging landowners to prevent fires by cultivating more fire-resistant crops. She is also working on a project related to Canadian legal institutions and crimes. In addition, she enjoys teaching and helping students find their interests and achieve good performance in economics.

2020: Marieh Azizirad

Marieh Azizirad is a PhD candidate in economics at SFU who joined the program in Fall 2017. Marieh was born and raised in Iran where she completed her bachelor's and master's degrees in economics. Her research interests are macroeconomics with a focus on monetary economics. The awarded working paper, co-authored with associate professor Lucas Herrenbrueck, developed a model where agents have imperfect information to study the trading halts due to information frictions and beliefs. She is currently a sessional instructor at SFU teaching ECON 305: Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory. She enjoys both research and teaching, and is planning to stay in academia after completing her PhD.

2019: Boxi Yang

Boxi Yang is a PhD student in economics at SFU. She obtained her B.S. degree at Beijing Jiaotong University and master's degree at New York University. Her research interests range among various topics in the fields of development and labour economics. The awarded working paper examines the gender specific quantity-quality trade-off of children within households in the context of rural China. She is also working on a project regarding the intergenerational transmission and dynamics of cultural values. Besides her academic research, Boxi enjoys teaching as well and tries to help the students get a better learning experience in economics.

In Memoriam

Originally from Parry Sound, Ontario, James Dean earned his BSc in mathematics at Carleton University. He obtained his MA and PhD in economics at Harvard University. James specialized in international economic policy, trade policy, monetary and exchange rate policy, and transition and globalization.

James joined SFU in 1969 as a visiting instructor and later professor. Committed to teaching and mentoring, he inspired generations of students to study economics.