UC Berkeley economist Gregory Grossman, who died on Aug. 14, was considered a towering figure in the study of the Soviet economy who shaped the thinking of generations of scholars. Born in Kiev, and educated at Cal and Harvard, he went on to coin the term “command economy.”
Grossman was a polymath who also understood the political, ideological, social and cultural underpinnings of economic life in the Soviet Union. As a result, he was widely sought out by his peers for comments on their scholarship.
And Grossman, who always held a particular affection for Berkeley and the Bay Area, was also a consummate gentleman. As his UC Berkeley colleague George Breslauer noted: “I never saw him present his ideas aggressively. He let the evidence and logic speak for themselves. In the end, the passage of time proved him right on almost all scores.”
Read Grossman’s obituary, published on Berkeleyside, and feel free to leave your memories and notes of condolences in the Comments there.
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