At the AHI’s April Colloquium, Robert Paquette announced the creation in Rochester, New York, of the first branching of the AHI:  AHI-WEST.  Professor Michael Rizzo, a senior fellow of the AHI and an economist at the University of Rochester, will direct AHI-WEST.  The AHI is pleased to announce that the Apgar Foundation, headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, has awarded the AHI a major grant to support the programmatic activities of AHI-WEST for the forthcoming academic year.

“Professor Rizzo brings an uncommon constellation of talents to the AHI,” AHI co-founder Robert Paquette observed.”  “He has won multiple teaching prizes at the University of Rochester; he has committed himself to redressing the economic illiteracy among high school and college students, and, above all, he stands committed to the principles of freedom established by the founders of this country.”  Indeed, the grant proposal, jointly authored by Professor Rizzo and Professor Paquette, underscored how the AHI  had  “been inspired and impressed by the emergence of freedom supporting organizations over the previous decade. This ‘bottom-up’ emergence lends credence to the idea that ‘ideas matter’ and that there is no single model that is understood to move societies in the direction of liberty–hence the continued importance of new organizations, entrepreneurial organizations, and a dedication to the ideas of liberty. The success of modern corporatism, nanny-statism, and destructive welfare statism are examples of the power that ideas have to sway us in destructive ways.”

“We are thankful for, and inspired by, the vision of the APGAR Foundation to support undergraduate education in the classical liberal tradition,” said Professor Rizzo.  “Our students are already enthusiastically planning programming events to support our five core initiatives: dedicated reading groups; guest speaker series; our ELFS program; undergraduate research program; and our series of ‘micro-programming’ events.  APGAR’s support is vital both for the development of such programming and for enabling our students to share what they are learning with the world outside of the AHI-West.”

Some of the possible topics to be engaged by AHI-WEST and University of Rochester students include Public Choice; Social Reforms: Anarchy and Minarchy in the Past and Future; an in-depth study of The Great Depression; the Founding Fathers; History of Monopoly and Corporatism; Financial Regulation; Property Rights; An Examination of Marxism and its Criticisms; the works of Joseph Schumpeter; Economics 2.0 (How Entrepreneurial Dynamics Changes the Textbook view of Economic Activity); George Stigler; Ronald Coase, Harold Demsetz and Armen Alchian; Austrian economics; The Ethical Foundations of Economics; and other topics such as case studies in Environmental Economics and Policy.

The AHI congratulates Professor Rizzo on his achievements and looks forward to the flowering under his care of the AHI’s first branch.