Richard M. Cyert

TIMS President, 1972-73


Richard M. Cyert was the 19th President of TIMS and former President of Carnegie-Mellon University (1972-1990). He was internationally known for his work in economics, behavioral science, statistics, and management.

Dr. Cyert spent 50 years at Carnegie Mellon. He began as an instructor in economics in 1948 and rose to be Professor of of Economics and Industrial Administration. He became Dean of the university’s Graduate School of Industrial administration. Through his leadership, Carnegie-Mellon was transformed from an Eastern technical school to a premier U.S. University. He strengthened its academic programs, and significantly expanded its research. Carnegie Mellon became known as “Computer U.” The number of nationally ranked programs increased from three to twelve. He also moved the University’s finances from being in inherited deficits to being continually solvent. After his retirement in 1990 he continued teaching economics (1990-97), headed the Carnegie Bosch Institute (1990-92) which focuses on improving international management and was Chairman of the Board of the National Instituted of Statistical Sciences

He was the author of 12 books and over 100 articles. His trail blazing book with Jim March on A Behavioral Theory of the Firm was named a Citation Classic by the Institute for Scientific Information (ISI). He was awarded several honorary doctorates and two prestigious research fellowships: Ford Foundation and Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship. He was a Naval Officer during World War II.

He was a fellow of the Econometric Society, AAAS, and the American Statistical Association.

Dr. Cyert died in 1998.

BA, 1943, Minnesota; PhD (economics), Columbia (1948).