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The Sir John M. Templeton Fellowships Essay Contest

Created in 1974, the Olive W. Garvey Fellowships were offered biennially from 1982 until 2007. Since 2008 the contest has been sponsored by the John Templeton Foundation and is now annual.

2008 Templeton Fellowship Winners

Essay Topic

For decades social critics in the United States and throughout the Western world have complained that “property” rights too often take precedence over “human” rights, with the result that people are treated unequally and have unequal opportunities. Inequality exists in any society. But the purported conflict between property rights and human rights is a mirage—property rights are human rights.
—Armen Alchian, “Property Rights” in The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics
Are property rights human rights? How are they related? What are their similarities and differences? If property rights are human rights, why have they enjoyed fewer legal protections and intellectual champions than other human rights?

Junior Faculty Member Winners

Student Winners


    Prof. Jonathan Bean, Southern Illinois University Carbondale
    Prof. Roderick Long, Auburn University
    Dr. Alberto Benegas Lynch, Jr., National Academy of Science, Buenos Aires

The 2008 contest drew applicants from Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Germany, Ghana, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Iran, Israel, Kenya, Nigeria, the Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, and the United States.

  • Catalyst
  • Beyond Homeless