Festschrift for Raul V. Fabella

Sarah Lynne S. Daway-Ducanes, Emmanuel S. de Dios


This special edition of the Philippine Review of Economics honors Dr. Raul V. Fabella in his 70th year and recognizes his invaluable contribution to the economics discipline and profession. This edition comprises 13 articles from his colleagues and several generations of former students inspired or mentored by Dr. Fabella who are themselves making their mark in economics. The broad spectrum of topics covered—agricultural economics, competition policy, contract theory, game theory, history of economic thought, international economics, issues in productivity, growth and development, monetary policy, political economy and rent-seeking, public economics, and the theory of teams—are issues that Dr. Fabella himself has written on or taught his students during his long, productive years as a Professor of Economics at the UP School of Economics, nurturing an “oasis of excellence” in his spheres of influence, as well as advocated as a roving academic in his later years, endeavoring to engage policymakers and the public in general, in pursuit of welfare-improving changes for a better Philippines. 

The wide gamut of topics in this issue is a testament to Dr. Fabella’s eclectic intellectual interests yet unwavering devotion to upholding a high standard of academic excellence. As his biographical sketch at the National Academy of Science and Technology summarizes:

Fabella’s very development as a scholar and intellectual leader presents numerous paradoxes: a classicist turned mathematical economist; a rational-choice theorist who derives material and metaphor from both history and physics; a solitary thinker who agonizes over pedagogy; a pure theorist immersed in policy-debate; an inherently shy, private man who must deal with crowds. His career displays to the fullest the range of issues – from the mathematical to the moral – that economists can and must confront if they are to attain to that “cool head and warm heart” that was Marshall’s ideal. A classicist, however, might simply recall Terentius: Homo sum: humani nil a me alienum puto.


Indeed, to Dr. Fabella, nothing related to human behavior is outside his interest. At 70 years of age, National Scientist of the National Academy of Science and Technology (Philippines) and Professor Emeritus at the University of the Philippines, he is yet to reach the zenith of his intellectual verve: Fabella the economist is transfiguring into Fabella the social scientist – one to whom homo economicus is no longer the norm, but the exception in the vast complexity of human interactions in society. It is thus unlikely that this will be the last festschrift in his honor.

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