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Americans win Nobel in economics

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STOCKHOLM, Sweden -- Two Americans have won the 2002 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences.

Daniel Kahneman and Vernon L. Smith received the honour on Wednesday for their work using psychological research and laboratory experiments in economic analysis.

Kahneman, 68, a U.S. and Israeli citizen based at Princeton University in New Jersey, and Smith, 75, of George Mason University, will share the roughly $1 million prize.

The economics prize is the only one of the Nobel awards not established in the will of Swedish industrialist Alfred Nobel.

Kahneman has integrated insights from psychology into economics, especially concerning human judgment and decision-making under uncertainty, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said in its citation.

Smith laid the foundation for the field of experimental economics, demonstrating the importance of alternative institutions.

The academy singled out Smith's use of "wind-tunnel tests," where trials of new, alternative market designs are carried out in the laboratory before being implemented.

It said that work was useful, for example, in deciding whether to deregulate electric companies or privatise public monopolies, the citation said.

Wednesday's announcement of the economics prize was the second Nobel of the day.

Earlier, American, Japanese and Swiss scientists won the Nobel Prize in chemistry. (Full story)

John Fenn, 85, of the United States, Japan's Koichi Tanaka and Kurt Wuethrich of Switzerland received the award for developing methods of identifying and analyzing large biological molecules, such as proteins.

"Their work has paved the way for the future finding of a cure for cancer," said Bengt Norden, chairman of the Nobel committee for chemistry.

"Without it, there would be no modern pharmaceuticals."

The physics award, announced on Tuesday, went to Raymond Davis, 87, and Riccardo Giacconi, 71, of the United States and Masatoshi Koshiba, 76, of Japan. (Full story)

On Monday, two Britons and an American won the Nobel Prize for Medicine for discoveries that have shed light on diseases like AIDS as well as strokes. (Full story)

The winner of the 2002 Nobel Literature Prize will be revealed on Thursday.

The winner of the coveted peace prize -- the only one not awarded in Sweden -- will be announced Friday in Oslo, Norway.

The only public hints are for the peace prize.

Among the nominees are believed to be Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who has sought to unify his country after the hard-line Taliban was ousted by U.S.-led airstrikes, former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, the Salvation Army and the U.S. Peace Corps.

U.S. President George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair were nominated for leading the war against terrorism, The Associated Press reports, but are now seen as unlikely winners with the possibility of military action against Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.

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