A Farewell to Ronald Findlay
Society | 10 November 2021 A Farewell to Ronald Findlay

It is with deep sadness that we received the news of the passing of the economist and trade theorist Ronald Findlay, one of the finest experts of his generation.

Ronald Findlay had a distinguished career and made several major contributions to the areas of Trade and Development. He brought a distinctively broad, comparative perspective to the area of Economics, having dedicated the last years of his career to a more comprehensive historical review, which emphasized his deep historical knowledge and unique economic skills.

He was born in Rangoon, Burma, during British colonial rule. He had a Bachelor's from Rangoon University and a PhD from MIT. He worked at Rangoon University first as a tutor, then a lecturer, and finally as a research professor. At the time of his passing, Ronald Findlay was a Professor of Economics at Columbia University, New York.

Ronald Findlay is – and will always be – part of Nova SBE's journey, given that in the academic year of 1995/96, he was awarded the Doctor Honoris Causa degree by NOVA University Lisbon.

When asked about the impact of his contributions, Nova School of Business & Economics (Nova SBE) Professor Luís Campos e Cunha highlighted that "Ronald Findlay was a seminal academic in international trade and development. I was fortunate to learn from his book Trade and Specialization and later to be his student at Columbia. He was an excellent lecturer and had a delightful personality. He had to escape twice from Burma in dramatic circumstances. First, as a young boy on foot escaped to India amid the Japanese invasion; later again, he had to run away from Burma from the communist coup. He was solid in his convictions but never bitter about life. These sentiments, I am sure, are shared by his former Portuguese students. He had a wide knowledge of Portuguese history and was fascinated by the inroads the Portuguese made in Asia in the 16th century. He told me that in high school, he aimed to learn Portuguese and study our history. In fact, he had read everything he could find in English about Portugal and asked me complicated questions on that. He came to my school on several occasions and later was granted a Doctorate HC [Honoris Causa], by NOVA University Lisbon. I am going to miss him."

Nova SBE will hold him and his career as a poignant testament that it is our duty to nourish the bright minds who will lead us through the future.

What's happening