Seth Norton, Ph.D.

Professor of Business and Economics
On Faculty since 1995

Phone: (630)752-5310


Ph. D. 1982. University of Chicago (Economics and Finance)

M.B.A. 1975. University of Chicago (Finance and Industrial Relations)

M.A. 1971. University of Wisconsin, Madison (Public Policy and Administration)

B.A. 1969. Northwestern University (History)

About Seth Norton

Seth W. Norton is currently the Jean and E. Floyd Kvamme Professor of Political Economy and former Director of the Wheaton Center for Faith, Politics & Economics. Norton holds a B.A. degree in history from Northwestern University, a M.A. in public policy from the University of Wisconsin, a M.B.A. in finance and industrial relations, and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Chicago. Professor Norton has held teaching positions at Triton College, Washington University, Illinois State University, and the University of Michigan. Norton has a broad teaching background, including American government, economics, finance, marketing and business strategy. At Washington University, Norton was the recipient of the Burlington Northern Foundation Award for distinguished achievement in teaching.

Professor Norton’s research record is also diverse. He has published widely in nearly every area of business and economics as well as legal studies and public policy. Norton has made important research contributions on government regulation, franchising, telecommunications, and world poverty. Norton is a member of the executive board of the Western Economics Association International and serves as its secretary-treasurer. Professor Norton is currently studying the links between economic institutions and poverty, public polices towards business and the economy, government regulation, property rights, and the role of culture in framing economic institutions.

From 1996 to 2008, Professor Norton was head wrestling coach at Wheaton College. During that period, he coached 16 Wheaton wrestlers to CCIW championships, 3 Wheaton Invitational Championships, 5 All-American awards, two NCAA Division III championships, five Scholar-All Americans and one Scholar All-America team.

Birthdate: February 25, 1947

Honors / Awards

  • Palatine (Illinois) High School Athletic Hall of Fame, September, 2005
  • Earhart Foundation summer research fellowship, 2005
  • Julian Simon Fellow, PERC-Center for Free Market Environmentalism, Bozeman, Montana, 2001. Awarded fellowship to study effects of population growth on poverty, environmental degradation, and environmental enhancement
  • Earhart Foundation summer research fellowship, 1999
  • Burlington Northern Foundation Award for distinguished achievement in teaching, 1988
  • John M. Olin Fellow, 1986-87. Awarded fellowship to study economics of franchising
  • Beta Gamma Sigma, 1978
  • University of Chicago Fellowships, 1977-80

Academic Positions

  • Professor of Business and Economics, Wheaton College, July 1, 2014 to present.
  • Jean and E. Floyd Kvamme Professor of Political Economy and Director of the Wheaton Center for Faith, Politics, and Economics, July 2010 to June 2014.
  • Norris A. Aldeen Professor of Business, Wheaton College, Wheaton Illinois, 1997-2010
  • Norris A. Aldeen Associate Professor of Business and Economics, Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois, 1995-1997
  • Adjunct Instructor, Stuart School of Business, Illinois Institute of Technology, Summer 2003
  • Associate Professor of Economics, Illinois State University, Normal, Illinois, 1992-1995
  • Visiting Associate Professor of Business Economics, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 1990-1991
  • Associate Professor Marketing and Business Economics, Washington University, St. Louis, 1988-92
  • Assistant Professor of Marketing and Business Economics, Washington University, St. Louis, 1981-1987
  • Research Associate, Center for the Study of American Business, 1987-1988
  • Social Science Instructor, Triton College, River Grove, Illinois, 1970-1973

Other Positions

Associate, Management Analysis Center, Northbrook, Illinois, 1976-77, part-time 1977-78. Duties included budget analysis and corporate planning for client firms. Assignments included developing operating budgets in production and support functions and analysis of research and development budgets. Assignments also included economic and financial analysis for litigation support in antitrust cases. Client firms included Babcock and Wilcox, Mead Paper, Monsanto, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Parke-Davis Pharmaceuticals, and Warner Lambert.

Financial Analyst, Federal Energy Administration, Washington, D.C., 1975-76. Duties included review of firms’ requests for waiver of U.S. price and allocation regulations, analysis of financial and economic data, and drafting of recommendations for decisions regarding waiver requests.

Personal Consulting Clients

Chloride Battery, Consolidated Aluminum, Motorola, Proctor & Gamble, Smith and Nephew

Courses Taught

Undergraduate: American Government and Politics, Business Strategy and Analysis, Economic and Business Research, Econometrics, Economics of Competition, Industrial Organization, Intermediate Microeconomics, Investment Analysis and Capital Markets, Macroeconomics, Managerial Economics, Managerial Environment, Microeconomics, Marketing Policy, Money and Banking, Pricing, and Principles of Finance (Corporate), Survey of Social Sciences.

Graduate (MBA and Executive MBA): Microeconomics, Marketing Management, Marketing Strategy, Marketing Channels, Pricing, and Managerial Economics.

Doctoral Dissertation

Regulation and Business Fluctuations: The Case of Electric Utilities, December 1982

Publications—Refereed Journal Articles

"Religion and Educational Attainment in the United States," (with Annette Tomal), International Journal of Education and Human Development, 2, September 2016, 1-13.

Religion and Female Educational Attainment,” (with Annette Tomal), Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking, 41, August 2009, 961-986.

“Information Processing in the Theory of the Firm: The Rise of General Motors.” International Journal of the Economics of Business, 11, July 2004, 123-140.

“The Distribution of Internet Use: A Cross-National Analysis,” (with Chris Fallow) Journal of Private Enterprise, 19, Fall 2003, 38-53. Best Paper Award Winner, Association of Private Enterprise Education.

Economic Institutions and Human Well-being: A Cross National Analysis,” Eastern Economic Journal, 29, Winter 2003, 23-40.

Economic Growth and Poverty: In Search of Trickle-down,” Cato Journal, Fall 2002, 263-275.

“Vertical Integration, Communications, and Supply Assurances: The Case of Oil Refining,” (with C. M. Sashi), Journal of Business and Economic Perspectives, Spring/Summer, 2001, 91-102.

Strategic Quality Decisions under Heterogeneous Resource Endowments,” (with Byong-Duk Rhee), Journal of Economics and Management Strategy, 10, 2001, 235-264.

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