Peter Albin

Peter Albin

Peter S. Albin (December 20, 1934 – February 20, 2008) was an American economist who wrote and taught primarily in New York City. Among other contributions, he was known for applying cellular automata in the social sciences.

Peter S. Albin earned his BA, from Yale College in 1956 and Ph.D from Princeton in 1964, both in economics.

He was a professor of Economics at New York University from 1960–1974, and Chairman of the Economics Department of John Jay College of the City University of New York from 1974-1991. He taught and performed research at the Levy Economics Institute. He was visiting professor at the University of Göttingen in 1979-1980, the University of California, Berkeley in 1972-1973, he taught at the Sorbonne, at Cambridge University (1968–1969), at the Institute of Advanced Studies (Vienna) (1977–1979).

Peter Clarifies Economic Debate for a Colleague
Former Anthropology Professor Serena Nanda remembers fondly Peter's response when she asked him to explain "this economic stuff" to her simply. He said (approximately but essentially):

Just remember that when considering debt and unemployment, that unemployment is more important. It is vital that we keep people working.

She said that she had not known that these issues were discussed together, and that she had repeated this analysis to others countless times over the years. 


Peter was a wonderful colleague, an outstanding mentor and a very precious friend. It was a great honor and a rare privilege for me to be his colleague, research associate and friend, and I will never forget the compassionate human being who guided and assisted me, especially in the early years of my career. Peter will always hold a very special place in my memory and heart for the rest of my life.

Stergios Mourgos
Vice President & Chief Academic Officer, TRINITY International School of Tourism Management

I admired Peter, he was an extraordinary man. A splendid intellect, a rare combination of masterful technical skill and social sensitivity. What made him very special was his originality, his brilliant new ideas, the brave entry into formerly unknown territories.

Janos Kornai
Professor of Economics Emeritus, Harvard University and Collegium Budapest