Scientific Papers of Tjalling C. Koopmans, Volume 1

Tjalling C. Koopmans
Springer-Verlag | July 1970 | ISBN: 3540050094 & 9783540050094

(edited by Martin Beckmann, Carl F. Christ, and Marc Nerlove)  Tjalling Koopmans has made fundamental contributions to three major areas of modern quantitative economics. The first is the statistical identification and estimation of parameters in econometric models. The second is activity analysis, of which what is popularly known as linear programming is one aspect. The third is intertemporal utility maximization and the optimum allocation of resources over time. Most economists would be pleased to make seminal contributions in just one area as he has done in each. In making our selection of his papers to be included in this volume, we have attempted to include significant contributions in each of the major areas of Koopmans’ work.

We have tried as well to give some idea of the extraordinary breadth of the man and his work. It is for this reason that we have included one of his two published papers in physics, “Über die Zuordnung von Wellenfunktionen und Eigenwerten zu den einzelnen Elektronen eines Atoms,” a paper which is still referred to in basic physics texts. Although we were greatly tempted to include a major portion of Koopmans’ Ph.D. dissertation in mathematical statistics at the University of Leiden, we found that the entire dissertation was far too long and that a meaningful sub-section was difficult to extract because of the relative unfamiliarity of the basic approach to modern readers. Again both length and difficulty of condensation precluded inclusion of material from Tanker Freight Rates and Tankship Building, a careful empirical investigation into a problem of considerable contemporary significance.

As a matter of principle, we have excluded material originally published as part of Cowles Commission Monographs or in Koopmans’ recent book, Three Essays on the State of Economic Science, since these volumes are readily available and easily accessible. The remaining papers reprinted here represent our personal tastes to a considerable extent, subject to our desire to include as representative a selection of his work as possible. We have, however, included as complete a bibliography as we were able to reconstruct with the help of Truus Koopmans.