student clapping at lecture

Lectures & Forums

At Furman, majoring in economics doesn’t just mean studying with our renowned faculty. You’ll also have the opportunity to meet and network with the many esteemed economists representing a variety of fields who attend our special events. Our students have rubbed elbows with John Bates Clark Medal and Nobel Prize winners thanks to our popular American Enterprise Lecture.

American Enterprise Lecture

Each year, a notable economic scholar is invited to deliver the American Enterprise Lecture, funded by Marsh & McLennan. Our students have the opportunity not only to attend the lecture but also to interact with the esteemed guest.

Past speakers have included Nobel Prize winners, chairs from the Economic Advisors for the President, and popular economics authors, such as:

  • Juanita Kreps
  • Victor R. Fuchs
  • William Freund
  • Kevin M. Murphy, 1999 John Bates Clark Medal
  • Walter Heller
  • Alan Krueger
  • Wassily Leontief, 1973 Nobel Prize Winner
  • Peter Temin
  • Walter E. Williams
  • Ronald Ehrenberg
  • Irwin Kellner
  • Steven D. Levitt, 2003 John Bates Clark Medal
  • Lester Thurow
  • James Poterba
  • Dwight H. Perkins
  • Edward Glaeser
  • Manuel H. Johnson
  • Claudia Goldin
  • Alice M. Rivlin
  • Jagdish Bhagwati
  • Paul Krugman, 2008 Nobel Prize Winner
  • Rebecca Blank
  • Vladimir G. Treml
  • George Akerlof, 2001 Nobel Prize Winner
  • Jeffrey Sachs
  • Karl E. Case
  • Amartya K. Sen, 1998 Nobel Prize Winner
  • Jonathan Gruber
  • Deirdre N. McCloskey
  • Caroline Hoxby
  • Eileen Appelbaum
  • Christina Romer
  • Betsey Stevenson
  • Amy Finkelstein
  • Alan S. Blinder
  • David Autor
  • Kenneth S. Rogoff

Marsh & McLennan, Incorporated, the leading insurance broker in the United States with 86 offices nationally and worldwide affiliates and subsidiaries through Marsh & McLennan International, Incorporated, has generously endowed this American Enterprise Lectureship at Furman University. The object of the program, according to MMI chairman of the board Patton Kline, is to bring to the university community speakers “expert in economics and finance who are articulate and knowledgeable about the American system of private enterprise.”

In 1977, the insurance divisions of the Furman Company, established in 1888 by the late Alester G. Furman, merged with Marsh & McLennan. The late Alester G. Furman III, former chairman of the university’s Board of Trustees, was associated with the local office of Marsh & McLennan. Through his leadership, this program enabled distinguished lecturers to speak to students, faculty, and the Greenville community on economic matters of contemporary concern.