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Benjamin Powell

Tags Global EconomyCalculation and KnowledgeInterventionismPolitical Theory

Works Published inMises Daily ArticleThe Journal of Libertarian StudiesQuarterly Journal of Austrian EconomicsThe Free Market

Benjamin Powell is the director of the Free Market Institute and a professor of economics in the Jerry S. Rawls College of Business Administration at Texas Tech University.

Professor Powell is the North American Editor of the Review of Austrian Economics, past president of the Association of Private Enterprise Education, and a senior fellow with the Independent Institute. He earned his B.S. in economics and finance from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, and his M.A. and Ph.D. in economics from George Mason University. Prior to joining Texas Tech University, he taught economics at Suffolk University and San Jose State University.

Powell is the author of Out of Poverty: Sweatshops in the Global Economy (Cambridge University Press, 2014), editor of The Economics of Immigration: Market-Based Approaches, Social Science, and Public Policy (Oxford University Press, 2015), Making Poor Nations Rich: Entrepreneurship and the Process of Development (Stanford University Press, 2008) and co-editor (with Randall G. Holcombe) of Housing America: Building Out of a Crisis (Transaction Publishers, 2009). He is the author of more than 50 scholarly articles and policy studies. His primary fields of research are economic development, Austrian economics, and public choice. Prof. Powell's research findings have been reported in more than 100 popular press outlets, including The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. He also writes frequently for the popular press. His popular writing has appeared in Investor's Business Daily, The Financial Times (London), the Christian Science Monitor, and many regional outlets. He has appeared on numerous radio and television outlets, including CNN, MSNBC, Showtime, CNBC, and he has been a regular guest on FOX Business Network's shows Stossel and Freedom Watch.

All Works


Free MarketsInterventionism

07/26/2016Mises Media
Benjamin Powell explains how so-called sweatshops are an essential tool in combating poverty in the developing world.
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Sweatshops: A Way Out of Poverty

Global Economy

09/07/2014The Free Market
These so-called sweatshops are part of the development process that leads to better conditions. Austrian economic theory teaches that people choose purposively to improve their situation.
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Explaining Japan's Recession

World History

07/30/2014Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics
Japan has experienced an Austrian business cycle. The initial boom was created by a central bank–induced monetary expansion. Because of repeated interventions, the economy has not recovered.


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Do Pessimistic Assumptions about Human Behavior Justify Government?

Big GovernmentPhilosophy and MethodologyPolitical Theory

07/30/2014The Journal of Libertarian Studies
Is government a necessary institution? To answer this question, many theorists begin with an account of a state of nature in which there are no “rules” or institutions to regulate human behavior. They then compare that state of nature with outcomes that are theoretically achieved with a monopoly...


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Sweatshops: A Way Out of Poverty

Free MarketsGlobal Economy

03/20/2014Mises Daily Articles
Third world sweatshops benefit workers much the way factories in Great Britain and the US did during the Industrial Revolution.
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