Leo Herzel (1923-2011) – 1951 Color Television student article that laid the foundational analysis for frequency spectrum auctions around the world

Wednesday, 14 December, 2011

Leo Herzel, 87, former co-chair of Mayer Brown

I’ve heard of Leo Herzel (via Prof. Ronald Coase and others) for some years, it was only yesterday that I finally got around to read his “My 1951 Color Television Article” (The Journal of Law & Economics, 1998) that talks about his original 1951 thought provoking and influential idea and analysis.

Quoting the Leo’s obituary in the Chicago Sun-Times,

His legacy extends to at least three Nobel Prize-winning economists, including Ronald Coase, who credits Mr. Herzel with creation of the initial theory that later became the foundation for his Nobel Prize-winning article, “The Problem of Social Cost.”

Mr. Herzel’s analysis of market solutions to resource allocation problems, written while he was a student at the University of Chicago in 1950, guides FCC policy [in particular, frequency spectrum auctions in US and around the world] to this day.”

Leo passed away on July 21st, 2011. See obituaries from Illinois State Bar Association and Chicago Tribute.

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