Students and faculty at UCSB had the great good fortune to enjoy the company of Philip Babcock, a remarkable teacher, and a much-valued friend and colleague. His untimely death has saddened us all. But Philip was the kind of person that we remember with pleasure. Philip was a careful and creative thinker who loved to share ideas with both students and colleagues. For Philip, teaching was not just a job, but a chance to share the thrill of clear thinking about interesting problems.
We in the UCSB economics department would like to keep Philip’s memory alive by sponsoring activities for interested undergraduates that expose them to intriguing applications of economics. These would include at least one annual lecture, typically focused on economics research that is likely to captivate curious students. We would try to choose lecturers who are skilled at conveying some of the fun that Philip found in applying economics to the world.
The Philip Babcock Fund will be sponsored by the UCSB economics department. The fund would be used to cover travel expenses and modest honoraria for speakers, and expenses of on-campus events involving visitors and undergraduates. It could also make funds available for undergraduate research projects and other activities that would enrich the experience of undergraduate economics students who share some of Philip’s fascination with the life of the mind.
The economics department would be pleased to accept contributions from faculty, students, alumni, and any others who would like to remember Philip Babcock and help preserve his footprint at UCSB. Checks can be sent to the Department of Economics, North Hall, at UCSB. They should be made out to the University of California Regents, noting that the money is for the Babcock fund.