Robert Wilson, Paul Milgrom and R. Preston McAfee, whose basic research on game theory and auctions enabled the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to first auction spectrum licenses in 1994, were announced today as recipients of the 2014 Golden Goose Award.
They will receive their awards on September 18 at the third annual Golden Goose Awards ceremony in Washington, DC, along with other 2014 awardees. The ceremony will be held at the Library of Congress, with science correspondent Miles O’Brien serving as Master of Ceremonies.
The Golden Goose Award honors researchers whose federally funded research may not have seemed to have significant practical applications at the time it was conducted but has resulted in major economic or other benefits to society.
Including that first FCC auction in 1994, the agency has conducted 87 auctions, raising over $60 billion for the U.S. Treasury and enabling the proliferation of wireless technologies that make life convenient, safe and connected. Additionally, the basic auction process they developed has been used the world over not only for other nations’ spectrum auctions but also for items as diverse as gas stations, airport slots, telephone numbers, fishing quotas, emissions permits, and electricity and natural gas contracts.
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