Friedman Prize Winner: Hernando de Soto


Peruvian sociologist Hernando de Soto has won the second Milton Friedman Prize for Advancing Liberty, which is awarded every two years by the Cato Institute. As the author of 1989's The Other Path and 2000's The Mystery of Capital: Why Capitalism Triumphs in the West and Fails Everywhere Else, De Soto is an inspired choice (as was the first winner, economist Peter Bauer).

De Soto's presence has graced the pages of Reason. Check out, for instance, Citadels of Dead Capital: What the Third World must learn from U.S. history.

And here's a fantastic interview with the man himself that appeared in our February 1994 issue.

A snippet:

If you take a walk through the countryside, from Indonesia to Peru, and you walk by field after field--in each field a different dog is going to bark at you. Even dogs know what private property is all about. The only one who does not know it is the government. The issue is that there exists a "common law" and an "informal law" which the Latin American formal legal system does not know how to recognize.