Photo courtesy of Bryan Birdwell

BMO Public Lecture: Rethinking Housing Bubbles

The Bank of Montreal Lecture Series brings distinguished academics and speakers to Simon Fraser University to give public lectures on topics of interest to the community. This lecture is supported in partnership with BMO, SFU Department of Economics, and SFU Public Square.

Propositions on Housing, Instability and Recessions

Housing bubbles have foreshadowed 11 out of the 14 most recent US recessions. The last Great Recession (1997-2012) began with a housing bubble and collapse, with the effects still lingering today. Bubbles have occurred in economic history but severe episodes are rare. The recent collapse, like the Depression, was unexpected by economic and policy experts.

The Great Recession and the Depression were the result of a severe housing bubble that was triggered by households spiraling into negative net equity. Home values plummeted against fixed mortgages indebtedness, with banks and other lending institutions being pulled into this spiral. Our path to a recovery might be long. Dr. Smith will identify alternative recovery scenarios but none of them are painless.


Thu, 13 Nov 2014 5:30 PM

Lecture: 5:30PM
Reception: 7PM - 8:30PM


Lecture: Djavad Mowafghian Cinema

Reception: World Arts Centre

Goldcorp Centre for the Arts
149 West Hastings Street



Event is FREE, but REGISTRATION is required.


Vernon L. Smith
George L. Argyros Chair in Finance and Economics and President, International Foundation for Research in Experimental economics

Vernon L. Smith, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics, 2002, "for having established laboratory experiments as a tool in empirical economic analysis, especially in the study of alternative market mechanisms," has held appointments at Purdue University, Stanford University, Brown University, University of Massachusetts, USC, California Institute of Technology, University of Arizona, University of Alaska-Anchorage, George Mason University, and Chapman University.

Professor Smith received his bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering from California Institute of Technology (1949), his master's in Economics from the University of Kansas (1951), and his Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard (1955). He has authored or co-authored over 290 articles and books on capital theory, finance, natural resource economics, experimental economics, and the housing origins of economic instability, 1920-2014.
Professor Smith is a Fellow of the Econometric Society, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Purdue University awarded him an Honorary Doctor of Management degree in 1989. Dr. Smith was elected member, National Academy of Science, 1995. In 1996 he received Cal Tech's Distinguished Alumni Award. He became Kansan of the year (Topeka Gazette) in 2002, received a Distinguished Alumni award from the University of Kansas in 2011 and in 2014 an Honorary Doctor of Science degree.

He has served on numerous editorial and editorial advisory boards, and as president of several national economic associations. He has served as a consultant on the liberalization of electric power in Australia and New Zealand, and has participated in numerous private and public discussions of energy privatization and liberalization in the United States and around the world. In 1997 he served as a Blue Ribbon Panel Member, North American Electric Reliability Council.


Alexander Karaivanov
Associate Chair of the Department of Economics, Simon Fraser University

Alexander Karaivanov is the Associate Chair of the Department of Economics at Simon Fraser University. His main research interests are in the areas of development economics, contract theory, and applied microeconomics. He is currently working on solving, structurally estimating, and testing among competing theoretical models of financial market imperfections using data from Thailand.

Alexander received a B.A. (1997) in Economics from Sofia University, Bulgaria, a B.A. (1997) in Business Administration from Hogeschool van Utrecht, The Netherlands, an M.A. (1999) in Economics from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. (2003) in Economics from the University of Chicago.

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