Pioneers and Honorary Doctors

Pioneers and Honorary Doctors


Many people have influenced the development of NHH over the years. Profiles of a few of these people indicate the calibre of people associated with the school since its earliest days, and the influence they have had beyond the bounds of NHH.

The late Professors Karl H. Borch and Jan Mossin were among the founders of the economics of uncertainty and made important contributions to the theory of finance. Their seminal papers are appreciated worldwide and are still a source of inspiration for research at the department.

Honorary Doctors

The tradition at NHH is to award the degree Doctor Honoris Causa in connection with anniversaries of the school. The first six Honorary Doctors were conferred at the 50th Anniversary in 1986, followed by three new Honorary Doctors at the 60th Anniversary in 1996, and ten new at the 75th Anniversary in 2011.

  • Bengt R. Holmström

    Bengt R. Holmström

    • Paul A. Samuelson Professor of Economics, Department of Economics and Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
    • PhD, Stanford University 1978.

    Bengt Robert Holmström is a microeconomic theorist, best known for his research on the theory of contracting and incentives especially as applied to the theory of the firm, to corporate governance and to liquidity problems in financial crises.

    In 2016, Holmström and Professor Oliver Hart won Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel for their contributions to contract theory. Holmström has also won several other prestigious research awards.

    Holmström started his carreer at the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University in 1979, moved on to Yale School of Management in 1983, and joined MIT in 1994. He is an elected fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Econometric Society and the American Finance Association, and an elected foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and the Finnish Academy of Sciences and Letters.

    He is a research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, and served as President of the Econometric Society in 2011. Holmström holds honourary doctorates from Hanken School of Economics and the University of Vaasa in his native Finland, and Stockholm School of Economics. Professor Holmström has visited NHH on several occasions. He gave the annual Karl Borch Lecture in 2002 and the Frøystein Gjesdal Lecture on Accounting Research in 2013. 

  • Bernt Øksendal

    Bernt Øksendal

    • Professor Emeritus, Department of Mathematics University of Oslo.
    • PhD, University of California Los Angeles 1971.

    Bernt Øksendal’s main research area is within stochastic analysis. His more than 200 articles and five books in the field has made him Norway’s most cited mathematician, and his textbook in stochastic analysis is in use all over the World. Øksendal’s work has been both theoretical and applied, and the latter has been widely used in finance.

    He has also published works within biology and physics. Professor Øksendal has received several honours for his work, including The Nansen Prize, The University of Oslo Research Prize and membership in the Royal Norwegian Science Society and the Norwegian Academy of Science and letters. He has led large EU funded international research projects, and been visiting professor at Caltech and several branches of the University of California, among others.

    Professor Øksendal also initiated and co-ordinated several master level programmes in applied mathematics for students in Southern Africa. Øksendal has strong ties to NHH, where he was an adjunct professor at NHH from 1992 to 2015. He taught at both master and PhD level at NHH, and has published several articles together with NHH colleagues.

  • B. Espen Eckbo

    B. Espen Eckbo

    Tuck Centennial Chair Professor of Finance, and Founding Director, Lindenauer Center for Corporate Governance, Tuck School of Business, Dartmouth College (USA). PhD, University of Rochester 1981.

    B. Espen Eckbo conducts research in corporate finance and capital markets, with emphasis on investment banking, corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, and portfolio management and performance evaluation. His award-winning research has been published  in all of the top academic finance journals.

    Professor Eckbo has also performed research for the Norwegian Ministry of Finance, and in 2005 he assisted the Norwegian Government Pension Fund – Global in designing its corporate governance principles and strategy. He has also served on advisory boards for the Norwegian Research Council.

    He was an Adjunct Professor of NHH, Department of Finance and Management Science, for several years, and is highly valued by the school for his excellent contribution to the doctoral program and NHH's Executive programs in corporate finance.

  • Finn E. Kydland

    Finn E. Kydland

    Jeff Henley Professor of Economics, University of California, Santa Barbara. The Richard P. Simmons Distinguished Professorship; University Professor of Economics, Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University. Adjunct Professor, NHH. Nobel Laureate 2004. PhD, Carnegie Mellon University 1973.

    Finn E. Kydland’s research interests include dynamic macroeconomic theory and business cycles, international economics, labor economics and public economics. In 2004, Kydland and Professor Edward C. Prescott were awarded The Nobel Prize for Economics “for their contributions to dynamic macroeconomics: the time consistency of economic policy and the driving forces behind business cycles.”

    “They have made fundamental contributions to these areas of great significance, not only for macroeconomic analysis, but also for the practice of monetary and fiscal policy in many countries,” stated the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. Professor Kydland graduated from NHH in 1968. After a couple of years as a research assistant, he went to the US where he received his PhD. In the mid 1970’s he returned to NHH and a position as Associate professor. In this period, Kydland and visiting professor Prescott did important parts of the work that eventually would result in the Nobel Prize. Kydland has been an Adjunct professor at NHH since 1993.

  • William W. Hogan

    William W. Hogan

    Raymond Plank Professor of Global Energy Policy, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Research Director of the Harvard Electricity Policy Group (HEPG), Harvard University. PhD, University of California, Los Angeles 1971.

    William W. Hogan has pioneered and made fundamental contributions to the design and improvement of competitive electricity markets. His current research focuses in general on major energy industry restructuring, network pricing and access issues, market design, and energy policy in nations worldwide, including environmental economics and policy.

    Professor Hogan has been an adviser to the US government on energy policy for many years. He has also been an adviser to governments in a number of other countries around the world on energy policy, energy market restructuring and reform, etc.

    He has had close contact with the Scandinavian countries, and his research has been of decisive importance for the Norwegian and Nordic power market restructuring and reforms, particularly with regard to transmission pricing and access issues.

  • Tore Paulsson Frenckner

    Tore Paulsson Frenckner

    Frenckner was an economist with a PhD in economy from Handelshögskolan in Stockholm. He was a prominent representative of Swedish and Nordic venture economics, and made a pioneer contribution to the application of operational analytical methods.

    Tore Paulsson Frenckner had a strong affiliation with NHH. He was a guest lecturer and an expert on line evaluations. Frenckner was a good friend of the college throughout the years.

  • Robert Wilson

    Robert Wilson

    Wilson is the Adams Distinguished Professor in Management, emeritus, at Stanford Business School and is an honorary doctorate at both NHH and the University of Chicago. He earned his degree from Harvard University.

    Professor Wilson is known for his formative theoretical work, especially game theory. He is known to be a mentor for young researchers and has collaborated with NHH employees in many ways throughout the years.