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James A. Dearden

Department of Economics: Professor and Chair
  • Muhlenberg College, A.B.
  • Pennsylvania State University, Ph.D.
James Dearden is a specialist in game theory, he investigates economic incentives and contracts, cost sharing of collective actions, and the economics of college rankings and admission. His most recent research interests include: the strategic interactions among universities to improve their ranks in publications such as U.S. News &World Report’s: America’s Best Colleges and Universities; factors affecting college application and admissions decisions; and pharmaceutical detailing.
Professor Dearden has published papers on these topics in journals including American Economic Review, RAND Journal of Economics, International Economic Review, Journal of Public Economics, International Journal of Research in Marketing, and Economic Theory. Professor Dearden is co-editor of the new Berkeley Electronic Press journal, Journal of Industrial Organization Education ( In addition, Dearden writes the weekly Wall Street Journal Microeconomics Educators Review and is on the advisory board of the Wall Street Journal. Professor Dearden teaches microeconomics, Ph.D. microeconomics, game theory, and industrial organization theory. Professor Dearden began his academic career in 1987 at The American University and has been a Visiting Fellow at the Center for Economic Research, Tilburg University, The Netherlands.
Research Interests
  • The use of merit aid to improve university ranks; and the dynamics of university ranks. Empirical analysis of ranking dynamics and theoretical, and empirical analysis of merit aid competition.
  • Simultaneous search and signaling.
  • Pharmaceutical detailing: Strategic interaction among pharmaceutical companies.
Selected Publications and Working Papers
Office Information
Office: 463 RBC
Phone: 610-758-5129
Fax: 610-758-4677
Email: jad8 [at]     
Courses Taught
  • Applied Microeconomics Analysis
  • Game Theory
  • Micreconomic Theory
  • Competitor Analysis
  • Quantitative Marketing Analysis
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