Bruce Boghosian publishes on unequal wealth distribution
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AUA President Emeritus Bruce Boghosian Publishes in Scientific American

The American University of Armenia (AUA) is proud to share that an article authored by AUA President Emeritus Bruce Boghosian, PhD, was published in the November issue of the Scientific American, a popular monthly science magazine. Titled The Inescapable Casino, the article focuses on the issue of unequal wealth distribution in countries across the world. 

In the article, Dr. Boghosian, currently a professor of mathematics at Tufts University, discusses a simple analytical model developed by physicists and mathematicians that describes, with unprecedented accuracy, wealth distribution in modern economies.

“This method uses models of wealth distribution collectively known as agent-based, which begin with an individual transaction between two ‘agents’ or actors, each trying to optimize his or her own financial outcome. In the modern world, nothing could seem more fair or natural than two people deciding to exchange goods, agreeing on a price and shaking hands,” writes Dr. Boghosian in his article.

In 2017, with colleagues from Tufts University, Dr. Boghosian created an agent-based model of wealth distribution, which shows that “free markets cannot be stable without redistribution mechanisms.” Dr. Boghosian confesses that the issue of unequal wealth distribution first sparked his interest during his four-year stay in Armenia as president of AUA from 2010 to 2014. He witnessed how the unrestricted free market following the collapse of the Soviet Union had engendered a juxtaposition of the rich minority and the poor majority of Armenians.

Dr. Boghosian delivered a talk on Agent-Based Modeling of Wealth Distribution and Upward Mobility at the Global Innovation Forum (GIF) 2019 held in Armenia on October 16-18, 2019. He centered his message on the impact that applying statistical physics to economics might have on political discourse, ethics, and public attitudes in the years ahead.

The full article can be accessed on the web page of the Scientific American for free until November 10, 2019.

Founded in 1991, the American University of Armenia (AUA) is a private, independent university located in Yerevan, Armenia, affiliated with the University of California, and accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission in the United States. AUA provides local and international students with Western-style education through top-quality undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs, promotes research and innovation, encourages civic engagement and community service, and fosters democratic values.

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