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Section 1

Robert W. Resek

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Robert W. Resek

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Professor Emeritus of Economics

Research Interests

Econometrics, regional economics


Economics, Harvard University, 1961


Robert Resek was an undergraduate at the University of Illinois at Urbana, where he worked as a computer programmer on the Illiac, one of the world's first digital computers, and served as a research assistant performing econometric modeling. As a Bronze Tablet Scholar, he graduated in 1957. He was awarded a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship to attend Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts where he earned a Masters of Science in 1960 and PhD in 1961, both in economics.

He became an Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Illinois at Urbana in 1961 and rose to the rank of Professor by age 35. His research was on technical progress, investment behavior, the demand for money, risk analysis and regional economics. This research was funded by the National Science Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, the US State Department, the Illinois Chamber of Commerce and the Illinois Board of Higher Education.

In 1977 he became Director of the Bureau of Economic and Business Research of the University where he published a quarterly Illinois Economic Review, an annual Illinois Economic Outlook and a Statistical Abstract of Illinois. As an advisor to Governor Thompson, he organized a conference and book, The Midwest Economy: Issues and Policy. During his tenure, the Bureau significantly expanded its role in analyzing the state economy including the development of significant forecasting capability for the state economy and state revenue. He was active in the Association of University Business and Economic Research where he served as director, vice president, and president.

For the University, he chaired the Advisory Committee on Priorities and several other major university wide committees. He was awarded the College of Business Best Teacher award. In 1977, he was visiting Professor at Kyoto University and the US State Department Scholar in Japan and gave lectures throughout Japan.

He served as University Vice President for Academic Affairs from 1988 to 1995 where he was chief budget officer, and senior academic officer for the University. He played a role in the continuing increase in revenue for both the Urbana and Chicago campuses and significantly increased funding for the Institute of Government and Public Affairs, provided strong support for the University Press, and reorganized the Survey Research Laboratory. He was Vice President of the Midwest Consortium for International Activities and in this role worked to advance programs in Malaysia, South America, and elsewhere in the world.

From 1995 to 2005 he served as a Professor both in Economics and the Institute of Government and Public Affairs. With others he wrote, Illinois Higher Education: Building the Economy, Shaping Society. And from 1999 to 2004 he was a member of the Governor's Economic Policy Council in Illinois.

Selected Publications

  • "Illinois Higher Education: Building the Economy, Shaping Society," with David F. Merriman, Susan R. Hartter, Diane M. McCarthy and Paul F. Byrne, Institute of Government and Public Affairs, University of Illinois, 2000.
  • "The Third Chicago Airport: What About the Consumer?" Economic Edge, May 2000.
  • "Illinois Benefits Greatly from Higher Ed Industry," Champaign News-Gazette, May 21, 2000.