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2008: Marshall Goldman

Fellows in Residence 

Marshall Goldman, Ph.D.
Kathryn Wasserman Davis Professors of Russian Economics, Wellesley College and Senior Scholar at Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University
November 19, 2008 

Marshall I. Goldman delivered a public address,  "Petrostate: Putin, Power, and the New Russia" on Wednesday, November 19, 2008 in Shaw Hall, Melvin and Dollie Younts Conference Center, Furman University.  Goldman is Kathryn Wasserman Davis Professor of Russian Economics (Emeritus) at Wellesley College. An expert on the Russian economy and the economics of high technology, he joined the Wellesley faculty in 1958. In 1998, the Wellesley College Alumnae Association awarded him its first Faculty Service Award. He is currently Senior Scholar at the Davis Center for Russian Studies and Eurasian Affairs at Harvard University after having served as Associate Director from 1975 to 2006.

An internationally recognized authority on Russian economics, politics, and environmental policy, Professor Goldman is known for his study and analysis of the careers of Mikhail Gorbachev and Boris Yeltsin. He is the author of over a dozen books on the former Soviet Union, including The USSR in Crisis: The Failure of an Economic System, and Gorbachev's Challenge: Economic Reform in the Age of High Technology (1987), in which he envisioned the monumental problems that would confront Perestroika and which threw the country into economic and political turmoil. His works also include What Went Wrong with Perestroika: The Rise and Fall of Mikhail Gorbachev (W.W. Norton, 1991), monographs entitled Lost Opportunity: Why Economic Reforms in Russia Have Not Worked (W.W. Norton, 1994) and Lost Opportunity: What Has Made Economic Reform in Russia So Difficult (Norton, 1996), and The Piratization of Russia: Russian Reform Goes Awry (Rutledge, 2003). His most recent book, Petrostate: Putin, Power and the New Russia (Oxford University Press, April 2008), tells an intriguing tale of Putin's control of petro assets and the power it wields.

A frequent visitor to the republics of the former Soviet Union, Professor Goldman was present during the August 1991 coup attempt. He has met with Mikhail Gorbachev, Vladimir Putin, former President George Bush, and President George W. Bush and continues to meet regularly with business leaders, diplomats, and government officials at the highest levels in both countries.

More about Dr. Goldman

Dr. Goldman taught American economics to students and general audiences while a Fulbright-Hayes Lecturer at Moscow State University in 1977; and in 1980s, he was invited by the U.S. Ambassador to the former Soviet Union to deliver a series of lectures on behalf of the U.S. Government. He also has spoken on several invitational tours in China and has lectured throughout Western Europe and Asia.

A consulting editor to the journal Current History, Goldman's expertise is also sought by the media. He has written frequently for such publications as Current History, Foreign Affairs, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Harvard Business Review. His articles have also appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, and Science, and he has been a frequent guest on CNN and “Good Morning America.” He has appeared on “The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour,” “Crossfire,” “Face the Nation,” “The Today Show,” and “Nightline.”  In addition, he is often heard on National Public Radio and has written regularly for the Russian newspapers, Moscow News and The Moscow Times.

In 1991, Professor Goldman was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has been a consultant to the State Department, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Council on Environmental Quality, the Ford Foundation, and numerous corporations. A director of the Century Bank and Trust Company, the Jamestown Foundation and Trustee of Northeast Investors, Professor Goldman is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the American Economic Association. Professor Goldman has served as a trustee of the Noble and Greenough School as well as The Commonwealth School of Boston and is past president of the Hillel Council of Greater Boston. He is also past president of the early music group, Boston Baroque. A longtime resident of Wellesley, Massachusetts, Marshall Goldman was an elected member of the Wellesley Town Meeting and also served on the town's Conservation Commission as well as the Incinerator Study Committee.

Professor Goldman is a 1952 graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and received M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Russian studies and economics from Harvard University in 1956 and 1961, respectively. He was awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in 1985.

Marshall Goldman and his wife, Merle, a professor emerita of Chinese history at Boston University, are the parents of four children.