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Arnold H. Raphaelson, Emeritus Professor of Economics, Dies at 80

September 9, 2010
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Arnold H. Raphaelson, 80, professor emeritus of economics at Temple University, died July 22 at Abington Memorial Hospital. He was a resident of Dresher.

Born and raised in Worcester, Mass., Raphaelson attended public schools there, and graduated from Cushing Academy, Ashburnham, Mass. He was editor of the Brown Daily Herald, and earned an A.B. in English from Brown University in 1950 and an M.S. in Journalism from Columbia University in 1951.

He continued communications work in the Army in 1951, and was a historian-writer in the Chemical Corps.

Discharged as a corporal in 1953, he returned to Massachusetts as a staff reporter for the Worcester Telegram.

He also enrolled in graduate school in economics at Clark University, where he earned an M.A. in 1956 and a Ph.D. in 1960. His principal interest was public finance -- studying the cost and operations of government programs at the federal, state and local levels. His graduate theses analyzed the macroeconomic effects and federal-state relationships in U.S. unemployment compensation. A version was published by the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.

In 1958, Raphaelson joined the faculty of the University of Maine in Orono.

While on leave in the mid-1960s, he served as a professional staff member (majority counsel) for the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Intergovernmental Relations in Washington, D.C. He took part in hearings and the framing of legislation concerning federal grants and mandates to state and local governments.

He also directed and wrote a study on federal expenditures to states and regions that traced the impact of government contracts, and grants to the states and areas providing the employment and resources. This was published in 1966 by the U.S. Government Printing Office.

Raphaelson was recruited by Temple University and joined its faculty in 1966. Over the next 40 years, he taught graduate and undergraduate courses, served on a number of faculty committees, and continued research and writing primarily on government activity, with an emphasis on health-related topics. He also taught in and was the director of the M.A. program in economics at Temple University Japan in Tokyo, where he taught for three separate years.

Aspects of public finance and health economics were merged in much of his work after coming to Temple. However, he continued his interest in property taxation and wrote chapters on that topic for various editions from 1975 to 2004 of the volume Management Policies in Local Government Finance.

From 1968 to 1974, he co-wrote papers on the distribution of health services and manpower in Pennsylvania for presentation at associations such as the Pennsylvania State Health Advisory Council and the National Center for Health Statistics.

After the passage of the Occupational Safety and Health Act, Raphaelson became a consultant to the solicitor of the U.S. Labor Department, and assisted in the conduct of hearings to form health standards under the act. He wrote economic reports on the standards for cotton dust and coke ovens in the steel industry, as well as the production and use of arsenic.

In 1977 and 1978 -- with an award from the U.S. Bureau of International affairs -- he visited Europe to survey methods for health standards, and found that other nations often adopted U.S. occupational health standards.

In 1988, he helped develop a model for examining the cost effectiveness of alternative methods of detoxification from alcohol for clinical studies for the U.S. Veterans Administration. It was implemented by the Philadelphia V.A. Medical Center. The results were published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1988.

In 1988, he also edited a volume on Restructuring State and Local Services -- a volume with chapters on privatization of some government services. With R.E. Bernstein, he contributed two chapters, and they also co-wrote a paper, "Commonwealth Cause 2003 Tax Reform Plan" for the speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

He retired and became professor emeritus in 2006.

Raphaelson is survived by his wife of 60 years, Ruth (Camann) Raphaelson; sons Marc Raphaelson, Jonathan Raphaelson and Joshua Raphaelson; as well as five grandchildren.

Memorial contributions can be made to a scholarship fund in his name at Temple University, Broad and Montgomery Aves., Philadelphia, PA 19122.

 

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