NBER Profile: W. Kip Viscusi
W. Kip Viscusi is a Research Associate at the NBER. He is affiliated with the NBER's programs on Law and Economics and Health Care.
Viscusi is the University Distinguished Professor of Law, Economics, Management at Vanderbilt University. Before coming to Vanderbilt he was the John F. Cogan, Jr. Professor of Law and Economics and the Director of the Program on Empirical Legal Studies at Harvard Law School. He has also been Professor of Economics at Duke University and Northwestern University.
Professor Viscusi's research focuses on individual and societal responses to risk and uncertainty. He has published over 20 books and 250 articles, including Fatal Tradeoffs (1994) and Smoke-Filled Rooms: A Postmortem on the Tobacco Deal (2002). He is a four-time recipient of the Kulp-Wright Award for Outstanding Book on Risk and Insurance from the American Risk and Insurance Association. He was ranked as the leading contributor to the risk and insurance literature by the Journal of Risk and Insurance in 1998 and as the leading contributor to the health economics literature by Health Economics in 2003.
Viscusi's estimates of the value of risks to life and health are currently used throughout the Federal Government. He has served as a consultant on these issues for many U.S. government agencies, including the Office of Management and Budget, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, and the Department of Justice. He has been a member of the EPA's Science Advisory Board and is currently on the EPA's Homeland Security Committee.
Viscusi is the Founding Editor of the Journal of Risk and Uncertainty and has served on the editorial board of many other journals, including the American Economic Review and the Review of Economics and Statistics.
He received a A.B. in economics summa cum laude from Harvard, where he also received his A.M. in economics, M.P.P. in public policy, and Ph.D. in economics.
Viscusi and his wife, the economist Joni Hersch, spend their vacation time at their home in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, which they designed and for which they also served as general contractors. There they pursue a variety of outdoor interests, including downhill skiing, snowshoeing, mountain biking, hiking, and running.