Israel Kirzner 101: The Maverick of Austrian Economics
Zatrun Published at March 19, 2023

Israel Kirzner 101: Who is an American Economist? in our article of, we will cover in detail everything you need to know about the American economist Israel Kirzner, who our readers are curious about.

Who is Israel Kirzner?

Israel Kirzner was born on February 13, 1930 in London and is an American economist closely identified with the Austrian School. The son of a well-known rabbi and Talmudist, Kirzner reached the United States via South Africa. Throughout his life, he has been known for his work on economic theories and ideas.

Kirzner started his education at the University of Cape Town in South Africa and studied there from 1947-48. Then, between 1950-51, he studied at the External Program of the University of London. Continuing his educational life, he received a BA degree from Brooklyn College in 1954 and an MBA and Ph.D. in 1955.D. he took his degrees. Later, in 1957, he studied at New York University with Ludwig von Mises.

Israel Kirzner began his career by teaching at New York University, where he taught until 1960. Later, he worked as a faculty member at different universities such as the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and George Mason University. During his career, he became known for his work on the theories of the Austrian School.

In addition, Israel Kirzner is known for his research on entrepreneurship and market pricing. He is also known for his book “Competition and Entrepreneurship”. The book deals with entrepreneurship and how market competition interact with each other.

Kirzner adopted an approach that does not see entrepreneurship as just the establishment and management of enterprises. According to him, entrepreneurs contribute to the markets by discovering new opportunities in existing markets and offering new products and services that will meet the needs of consumers. Kirzner has researched how entrepreneurship Decouples with market competition and how this affects market pricing.

His Contributions to the Economics

Kirzner is a distinguished professor of economics at New York University. He is considered a leading authority on the economic thought and methodology of Ludwig von Mises. His research on the economics of entrepreneurship is also widely recognised.

His book “Competition and Entrepreneurship” criticises the neoclassical theory for neglecting the important role of the entrepreneur in economic life due to its preoccupation with the full competition model. Kirzner’s work integrating entrepreneurial action into neoclassical economics gained more widespread acceptance than almost any other Austrian idea of the late twentieth century.

in 2006, Kirzner received the Global Entrepreneurship Research Award for developing economic theory that emphasizes the importance of the entrepreneur for economic growth and the functioning of the capitalist process.

Although Kirzner’s ideas have had a significant impact on the field of entrepreneurial studies, they are primarily associated with the perspective of opportunity discovery. However, a careful reading of Kirzner’s work shows that her entrepreneurial research can be divided into two camps: one focuses on exploring, the other on creating.

His Other Works

Like Joseph Schumpeter, Kirzner’s work can controversially be divided into Kirzner Mark I and Kirzner Mark II. His main studies are on the knowledge economy, entrepreneurship, and market ethics. Kirzner pointed out that some Austrian School economists, who, as noted by Roger Garrison, deny the relevance of market equilibrium in their work, have recently taken a middle way towards some of their extreme positions.

The Universidad Francisco Marroquín awarded Kirzner an honorary doctorate for his contributions to economic theory. The Kirzner Entrepreneurship Center is named after him at the Universidad Francisco Marroquín.

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