Elements of Econometrics. Jan Kmenta. This classic text has proven its worth in university classrooms and as a tool kit in research--selling over 40, copies in the United States and abroad in its first edition alone. Users have included undergraduate and graduate students of economics and business, and students and researchers in political science, sociology, and other fields where regression models and their extensions are relevant. The book has also served as a handy reference in the "real world" for people who need a clear and accurate explanation of techniques that are used in empirical research. Throughout the book the emphasis is on simplification whenever possible, assuming the readers know college algebra and basic calculus.
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After earning his PhD in Economics with a minor in Statistics from Stanford under Kenneth Arrow in ,  Kmenta held academic positions at the University of Wisconsin —65, Michigan State University —73, and the University of Michigan emeritus and was a visiting faculty member at universities in five countries.
Kmenta received 24 academic honors, awards, and prizes during his career, beginning with being made a fellow of the American Statistical Association in and a fellow of the Econometric Society in , and stretching through when he received the NEURON Award for Lifetime Achievement in Economics.
Kmenta wrote extensively on econometric model building as well as econometric methods. He edited two books with James B. A wide-ranging econometrician, his papers analyze topics as disparate as small sample properties of estimators, missing observations, estimation of production function parameters, and ridge regression among many others. As a result, his work is referenced in publications in medicine, political science, insurance underwriting, antitrust litigation, and energy issues, to list but a few.
Oberhofer formally established conditions for validity of the iterative estimation method most widely used in econometrics today, while his simplified estimation of the constant elasticity of substitution constant elasticity of substitution production function both gave "the nascent field of industrial organization a new set of powerful tools for studying firm efficiency"  and has been used to analyze the cost of network infrastructure,  among many other applications.
Kmenta has made multiple other contributions incorporated into the core of econometrics. There is no doubt, however, that he is best known to the general economics profession around the world for his internationally acclaimed textbook, Elements of Econometrics titled after Euclid's Elements which was first published in and extensively revised in a second edition.
Having been published in Spanish, Portuguese, Persian , and Croatian over the years, it is still available in English today. As econometrics matured from a collection of clever solutions for specific problems into its own major field of research, econometricians worked to integrate what was known into a systematic whole greater than the sum of its parts.
In addition to listing what might be called well-solved problems, they made explicit the implied assumptions underlying them, what can be said if the assumptions are not logically valid, and how to obtain useful results in these cases. With his focus on econometrics and a strong background in mathematics and statistics Kmenta was a major contributor to this effort.
The book embodies the essence of Kmenta's approach to both econometrics and statistics which is perhaps best — if informally—characterized as "It's all very easy once you really understand it — don't bother memorizing anything, just do the algebra and think about what you are doing and why. Keep things as simple as possible. In addition to the requisite ability and intelligence, Kmenta's success is a testament to drive and perseverance.
After an adventurous escape in September he spent more than a year in various refugee camps in West Germany before managing to emigrate to Australia in December Kmenta was assigned to breaking rocks in a stone quarry in Picton near Sydney.
This was a task at which he excelled, managing to get himself fired even in a time of extreme labor shortage so that he could attempt to continue his education. He went to Sydney and met a professor at the Technical College in Ultimo who tested Kmenta's statistics training and immediately hired him to do statistical calculations. But the employment officer in Sydney would not allow an emigrant to have a job like that and instead sent him to a metal-stamping plant in Balmain. Sydney University was offering evening courses mainly but not exclusively for servicemen in which Kmenta managed to enroll.
On the Sydney University campus ethnicity and accent were of no relevance — all that mattered was one's capability of learning and enjoying the life of the mind.
There were several Czechs taking classes, all working during the day to survive. Professor Charles Birch made them feel welcome and advised them regarding administrative procedures for admission to the university and similar matters. He was married to award-winning Australian filmmaker Barbara Chobocky. Kmenta died on July 24, From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article is written like a personal reflection, personal essay, or argumentative essay that states a Wikipedia editor's personal feelings or presents an original argument about a topic.
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Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Award Neuron award for lifetime achievements .