Hal Varian

Hal Ronald Varian (born March 18, 1947, in Wooster, Ohio) is Chief Economist at Google and holds the title of emeritus professor at the University of California, Berkeley where he was founding dean of the School of Information. Varian is an economist specializing in microeconomics and information economics.

Early life

Hal Varian was born on March 18, 1947, in Wooster, Ohio. He received his B.S. from MIT in economics in 1969 and both his M.A. in mathematics and Ph.D. in economics from the University of California, Berkeley in 1973.


Varian taught at MIT, Stanford University, the University of Oxford, the University of Michigan, the University of Siena and other universities around the world. He has two honorary doctorates, from the University of Oulu, Finland in 2002, and a Dr. h. c. from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany, awarded in 2006. He is emeritus professor at the University of California, Berkeley, where he was founding dean of the School of Information.[1]

Varian joined Google in 2002 as chief economist, and has worked on the design of advertising auctions, econometrics, finance, corporate strategy, and public policy.

Varian is the author of two bestselling textbooks: Intermediate Microeconomics,[2] an undergraduate microeconomics text, and Microeconomic Analysis, an advanced text aimed primarily at first-year graduate students in economics. Together with Carl Shapiro, he co-authored Information Rules: A Strategic Guide to the Network Economy and The Economics of Information Technology: An Introduction.[3] According to the Open Syllabus Project, Varian is the fourth most frequently cited author on college syllabi for economics courses.[4]

Personal life

Varian is married and has one child, Christopher Max Varian.[5]

See also

  • Varian Rule
  • Varian’s theorems

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