Cohen, Ruth Louisa (Born 1906)
Ruth Cohen is one of the select band of leading professional economists whose importance is measured more by her emphatically commonsense influence on colleagues and pupils than by the length of her publications list. Born in 1906, she entered Newnham College, Cambridge, in 1926 to read for the Economics Tripos within a Faculty that contained a galaxy of outstanding individuals and included such stars as Keynes, Pigou, Robertson, Maurice Dobb and Piero Sraffa. She had already developed a research interest in agricultural economics when, after spending a couple of years as Commonwealth Fund Fellow at Stanford and Cornell, she joined the Oxford University Agricultural Economics Research Institute in 1933. For the next six years she pursued that specialization and completed two well-received books – one an analytical and statistical history of milk prices and the other a text on the economics of agriculture which J.M. Keynes invited her to write for the Cambridge Economic Handbooks, of which he was then editor.