Tag Archives: Karol Zdybel

Vernon Smith Prize 2016 – The Essays

Vernon Smith Prize 2016 | On February 6, 2017 the winners of last year’s essay competition did defend their papers at a special event in Vaduz (Principality of Liechtenstein). The essays of the three winners can read and downloaded here:

First Prize (€4,000): Karol Zdybel, Poland

Direct Democracy versus Representative Democracy. Cost and Benefits for the Citizenry
(PDF, 229 kb)


Second Prize (€3,000): Alan Futerman, Argentina

The Hayekian Case for Direct Democracy
(PDF, 527 kb)


Third Prize (€2,000): Mark O’Kane, Great Britain

Direct Democracy versus Representative Democracy: Cost and Benefits for the Citizenry
(PDF, 106 kb)

The 9th International Vernon Smith Prize for the Advancement of Austrian Economics was an essay competition sponsored and organized by ECAEF European Center of Austrian Economics Foundation, Vaduz (Principality of Liechtenstein). Topic of 2016: ‘Direct Democracy versus Representative Democracy. Cost and Benefits for the Citizenry!’

Vernon Smith Prize 2016: Winners announced

Vernon Smith Prize 2016 Call for Papers
Vernon Smith Prize 2016: Direct Democracy versus Representative Democracy …

1. Prize: Karol Zdybel (Warsaw, Poland)


2. Prize: Alan Futerman (Rosario, Argentina)


3. Prize: Mark O’Kane (Lancashire, UK)


Essays had been judged by an international jury. They will be posted after their defense at the ‘International Vernon Smith Prize Ceremony’ on February 6, 2017 in Vaduz, Principality of Liechtenstein.

The 9th International Vernon Smith Prize for the Advancement of Austrian Economics was an essay competition sponsored and organized by ECAEF European Center of Austrian Economics Foundation, Vaduz (Principality of Liechtenstein). Topic: ‘Direct Democracy versus Representative Democracy. Cost and Benefit of the Citizenry’.

Although, democracy is fundamentally a method for preserving individual liberty and civil rights, this almost narcotic term has become so powerful today that all essential limitations on governmental power are breaking down before it. By deteriorating into a scheme of legitimizing the regime of coalitions of organized interests, representative democracies gradually transform into oligarchies. While it is assumed that governments always have the people’s best interests in mind, for the most part they seem to act in their own behalf. In direct democratic systems, however citizens have more controlling devices at their disposal and can propose, decide, or profoundly modify their governing laws, and even secede from the republic. Are direct democracies more cost effective and beneficial for the citizenry?

1st Prize EUR 4,000 – 2nd Prize EUR 3,000 – 3rd Prize EUR 2,000

ECAEF invited papers on this topic which needed to meet several requirements, such as:

Entries may be submitted by individuals of up to 30 years (in 2016).

Entries may not exceed 12 pages; 1.5 spacing; left/right margins no less then 1 inch; full bibliography and a 1/2 page summary (abstract) must be included.

Entries had to be submitted in English in electronic form (PDF) including an abbreviated CV. Entry deadline was November 11, 2016.