# Gerard Debreu

Gerard Debreu
was born in Calais, France in 1921 and studied
mathematics in his youth, graduating from the University of
Paris in 1946. He was a member of the irreverent 'Bourbaki'
group in France in the early postwar period, a set of young
French mathematicians who set about reconstructing the
logical foundations of mathematics, publishing all their works
jointly under the name of a non-existing genius called 'Henri
Bourbaki'. In 1948, he came to the USA on a Rockefeller
Foundation Fellowship and in 1950 he joined the Cowles
Commission at the University of Chicago [see Marschak, J.].
He began to collaborate with Kenneth Arrow and together they
published an epoch-making paper, 'Existence of an Equilibrium
for a Competitive Economy' ( 1954), in which they provided a
definitive mathematical proof of the existence of general
equilibrium, using topological methods hitherto unknown in
economics.
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© **Mark Blaug**, *Great Economists Before Keynes: An Introduction
to the Lives and Works of One Hundread Great Economists of the Past
*, Brighton: Wheatsheaf, 1986. In **Stauffer Library: HB76 .B62
1986t**