BERG--Ivar E. (1929-2016),

an Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Pennsylvania, who made important contributions to the study of higher education, labor markets and industrial sociology, died on January 1, 2016. Dr. Berg's classic book, Education and Jobs: The Great Training Robbery (1970) cast doubt on economists' assertions that people with more education earn more because they are more skilled and productive; instead, employers frequently hire people to work in jobs that do not make use of their education. His book played a major role in a landmark civil rights decision by the U. S. Supreme Court, Griggs vs. Duke Power Company (1971) and was credited with providing the bases of the theory of market signaling, for which Akerlof, Spence, and Stiglitz shared the 2001 Nobel Prize in Economics. Among his many honors, he was elected a Fellow of the International Academy of Management, which cited him as "one of the seminal figures in the sociological study of labor markets and the founder of economic sociology." Born January 3, 1929 in Brooklyn, NY, he earned his AB at Colgate and his doctorate at Harvard. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps, retiring as a major, and on the faculties of Columbia and Vanderbilt, in addition to Penn. Dr. Berg, author of more than 70 articles and chapters and dozen books, leaves a wife, Sharon (Calli) Berg, a son and daughter-in-law, Geoffrey and Amy Berg, and stepsons Tim Smallwood (and his wife, Staci Smallwood) and Jim Smallwood (and his fiance, Catta Keith).

Published by New York Times on Jan. 10, 2016.
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12 Entries
I knew Ivar because my mother, Marcia K. Freedman, worked with him on a number of research projects involving youth employment and poverty. The word "mentor" was not in common use then, but Ivar was that for me when I was a teenager. I was interested in history and he introduced me to a number of historians and advised me about colleges. I still cherish a book on the history of historians with an inspiring inscription that he gave me after a trip to Princeton to meet a professor of French history. Ivar was witty, insightful and refreshingly free of cant or sentimentality. I did become an historian.
Paul Freedman
January 3, 2020
Ivar was a mentor to me before the word was generally in use. I still have a book about historians that he gave me when I was 16. Always to be remembered with admiration and affection.
Paul Freedman
February 4, 2016
Dear Callie, Geoff and Amy

Ivar lived a wonderful life and will long be remembered. It was great to know him.

Ed and Jeryl Mann
Edward Mann
January 18, 2016
Dear Calli and family, we are filled with sorrow upon learning of the passing of Dr. Berg. Our prayers for comfort and peace are with you. We have many fond memories of Ivar. His stories and words of wisdom will always be cherished.
Dr. Ross and Kim Spencer
January 15, 2016
Callie, We are so sad to hear of Ivar's passing. Our prayers and thoughts are with you and the rest of the family. Ivar was a great friend who gave us special and fond memories of times spent on the shore of Lake Michigan.

Donna and Al, Spring Lake, Michigan
January 13, 2016
We loved our Uncle Ivar! Special childhood memories with him. He will be missed. Sending lots of love to family!
darci wysong
January 12, 2016
Ivar was a fine example of "A Scholar and a Gentleman". Aside from his vast knowledge of just about everything, a wonderful, kind and caring man existed. I enjoyed getting to know him through Calli who was first my boss, then was and is a dear friend. I will cherish my memories of him.
Judy Christensen
January 12, 2016
Credit is also do for the many years Ivar and his wife lived in Penn undergraduate residences-- serving as a Faculty Master in the college house program. He was also a dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Penn.
James Newswanger
January 12, 2016
Callie, Our hearts go out to you.
Don and Jean Prutisto
January 12, 2016
Dear Callie, We are so disappointed in hear of Ivar's passing. We will always cherish our limited times together and endless enjoyable discussions on life and current events.We pray that everything in the future will be well with you and the family as you readjust to life without Ivar. We will keep you in our prayers. God Bless and take care. Call when you have time and we want to also thank you and Ivar for the knowledge and the advice you gave us over the years.
Guy & Gail Martin
January 10, 2016
Known that you are in my thoughts and prayers.
Janet DElaney
January 10, 2016

Our deepest condolences on your loss. Our prayers and thoughts are with you during these difficult days. Peace.
Dorothy and Jay Delaney
January 10, 2016
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