Richard Adelstein

Richard Adelstein is the Woodhouse/Sysco Professor of Economics at Wesleyan University. He has taught economics and social studies at Wesleyan since 1975, and twice has received the university’s annual Binswanger Award for Excellence in Teaching.

His teaching and scholarly interests lie at the intersection of economics, law, history and philosophy, and more specifically in the historical development of social institutions and the problem of how social order is created and maintained.

A pioneer in applying economic analysis to legal problems, he has published articles in scholarly journals in a range of disciplines. His book “The Rise of Planning in Industrial America, 1865-1914” — on the rise of big business in America and the political reaction to it in the years between the Civil War and World War I — was published in 2012. He is also the author of “Islands of Conscious Power: Louis D. Brandeis and the Modern Corporation,” which appeared in Business History Review (Vol. 63, Autumn 1989).

A 1968 graduate of MIT, he earned a master’s degree in teaching from Harvard University in 1970 and a PhD and a JD from the University of Pennsylvania and its law school in 1975.