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Hayek Awards in the Jubilee Year – Festive Dinner on the Occasion of the 30th Anniversary of the Hayek Institute

Hayek Awards in the Jubilee Year

Victoria Schmid

The Hayek Lifetime Achievement Awards 2023 go to…

After the panel discussion between OeNB Governor Robert Holzmann and Hayek biographers Bruce Caldwell and Hansjörg Klausinger in the afternoon, part 2 of the 30th anniversary celebration of the Friedrich A. v. Hayek Institute took place in the evening of November 27: The Hayek Lifetime Achievement Awards were presented during a festive dinner at the Haus der Industrie on Schwarzenbergplatz. IV Secretary General Christoph Neumayer welcomed the prominent guests, members and board members of the Hayek Institute.

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Eamonn Butler

The remarkable commitment of the two laureates, Dr. Eamonn Butler and Prof. Dr. Erich Weede, was acknowledged in laudatory speeches by Sir Keith Miles and Governor Robert Holzmann. Eamonn Butler, founder of the Adam Smith Institute, has distinguished himself through decades of unparalleled commitment to classical liberal values, Miles said. This has been particularly evident in his work as the author of numerous books and as president of one of Britain’s most important think tanks, which for many years topped the University of Pennsylvania’s international think tank rankings. Eamonn Butler has brought the ideas and teachings of the Austrian School to a wide audience. Miles’ recommendation for two books “that I would give to my grandchildren to read and study are Butler’s Foundations of a Free Society and An Introduction to Democracy. Not only my grandchildren, but every student should read these books!”

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Eamonn Butler surprised the audience with a humorous acceptance speech in his usual modest manner, announced in two versions: “Thank you” and “Thank you very much”.

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30 Years of the Hayek Institute

Before the next laudatory speech, the participants had the opportunity to view photos from 30 years of the Institute’s history. Memories of prominent guests (such as Nobel laureate Robert Mundell, heads of state such as Benjamin Netanyahu, Ivan Miklos, Jose Pinera and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher), studies on a wide range of socio-economic issues and publications, some of which are already in their fourth edition. Pictures of small discussion groups and mega-events such as the Free Market Road Show showed the broad spectrum of the Hayek Institute’s activities.

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Erich Weede

In his laudation for Prof. Dr. Erich Weede, Prof. Dr. Robert Holzmann emphasized the significance of the Hayek Lifetime Achievement Award and the timeless relevance of the principles of the Austrian School:

“Economics is more than numbers and charts. It is the result of human thought and action.”

Holzmann demonstrated the direct connection between the teachings of the Austrian School and the intellectual work of Erich Weede. The cornerstone of Weede’s research is the conviction that our social prosperity is primarily based on individual freedom and, in particular, economic competition. This approach is particularly evident in Weede’s economic historical analyses, especially in his research on the rapid economic rise of the People’s Republic of China and its geopolitical consequences.

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In his acceptance speech, Prof. Weede emphasized how much his own views have been influenced by various Austrian thinkers. In particular, he emphasized the importance of the philosophy of Karl Popper, Ludwig von Mises, Friedrich von Hayek, and Joseph Schumpeter. In his talk, Weede presented a quote from each of these thinkers that had a particular influence on him and his research. Dr. Erich Weede quoted Friedrich von Hayek:

“If you want to use human knowledge, which is scattered over thousands and millions of minds, you need economic freedom. Otherwise, most of human knowledge will be wasted and people will remain poor.”

He then cited Joseph Schumpeter’s theory of creative destruction in favor of the creation of new wealth. Weede concluded his lecture with a clear reference to the importance of the teachings of the Austrian School, especially in light of current economic policy developments in Europe.

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The certificates for the award winners, signed by the Honorary President of the Hayek Institute, Nobel Laureate Vernon Smith, and the Swarovski Rising Stars were presented by Secretary General Christoph Neumayer, Vice President Julian Hadschieff and President Barbara Kolm.

Guests at the Gala

Richard Zundritsch, Chairman of the Hayek Institute, hosted the evening and thanked the House of Industry for its hospitality and the sponsors whose “birthday donations” support the research activities of the Hayek Institute: Director Eduard Schock (OeNB), entrepreneur Johannes Strohmayer, LGT CEO Maximilian Hahn, Senator Ronny Pecik (RPR Private Foundation) and Director Markus Tomaschitz (AVL List).

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Prominent guests at the award ceremony and birthday party included Edeltraud Fichtenbauer, CEO of DONAU Versicherung AG Vienna Insurance Group, economics professor and Hayek biographer Hansjörg Klausinger, former state secretary Hubert Fuchs, former ambassador Elena Kirtcheva, Herbert Allram and Helene Kanta (board members of Wiener Städtische Wechselseitige Versicherungsverein – Vermögensverwaltung – Vienna Insurance Group), ski producer Paul Fischer, former rector Georg Winckler (University of Vienna) and Pan-Europa Secretary General Rainhard Kloucek.

Hayeks “The Road to Servdom”

Franz Portisch, Secretary General of the Sparkassenverband Österreich (Austrian Savings Banks Association), provided a “birthday present” for the guests, among whom was distributed probably the most seminal work by Friedrich A. von Hayek: “The Road to Serfdom” in the German Edition.

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All members of the Hayek Institute who could not attend the event will receive a copy in the Hayek Saal. Barbara Kolm is convinced that there is hardly a member whose bookshelf does not contain this famous work, “but there is always someone who is not yet familiar with Hayek. And in order for us to continue to grow, we all have to pass on the message,” said Barbara Kolm and concluded the evening with the words of board member Markus Tomaschitz about the Hayek Institute:

“It is the economic liberal force in the country that is needed more than ever. When redistribution becomes expropriation, the idea of the welfare state is finished. Levelling kills – first the will to achieve, then creativity, and later the welfare state. The Institute is therefore called upon to present economic correlations in order to draw the right conclusions for prosperity and growth in Austria.

Your copy of “Der Weg zur Knechtschaft” is available in the Hayeksaal (Grünangergasse 1 / 15-1, 1010 Vienna)! To read yourself, to pass on, to invite potential members.

See more photos here!

See the recordings of the speeches:

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