You are here

Robert Frank: Why Luck Matters More than You Might Think

Date of Lecture: April 24, 2017

Robert H. FrankAbout the Speaker: Robert H. Frank is H.J. Louis Professor of Management and Professor of Economics at Cornell University's Johnson School of Management. He is author of "Success and Luck: Good Fortune and the Myth of Meritocracy" (Princeton University Press, 2016) and "The Winner-Take-All Society: Why the Few at the Top Get So Much More Than the Rest of Us" with Philip J. Cook (The Free Press, 1995).

About the Talk: Frank argues that luck, along with hard work and talent, plays a significant role in individual success. However, wealthy people overwhelming attribute their success to hard work rather than to luck. "That's troubling," Frank says, "because a growing body of evidence suggests that seeing ourselves as self-made—rather than as talented, hardworking, and lucky—leads us to be less generous and public-spirited. It may even make the lucky less likely to support the conditions (such as high-quality public infrastructure and education) that made their own success possible."