Colloquium for the Advancement of Free-Enterprise Education (CAFÈ)


Welcome to the Colloquium for the Advancement of Free-Enterprise Education (CAFÉ)

CAFÉ’s Mission

To advance an accurate and objective understanding of free-enterprise principles through a variety of complementary activities.

Why is CAFÉ important?

All economic activity takes place within a socio-legal environment. A free-enterprise environment is based on the ownership and exchange of private property with property rights enforced and protected by various social rules and laws. To the extent that these conditions exist, economic growth is enhanced, innovation and technological progress occur, and an environment of increasing prosperity and improving standards of living follow. An educated understanding of the benefits of open markets tends to keep societies on free-enterprise paths, to their general benefit.

How does CAFÉ educate?

CAFÉ employs creative ways to communicate the value and importance of freedom of trade, investment and innovation. CAFÉ carefully and objectively investigates the costs and benefits of alternative economic policies through teaching, research, invited speakers, workshops and community and university-wide events and similar activities. A major focus of the colloquium is to clarify the working of unfettered markets to students who will be able to rely on this grounded knowledge and share it with others throughout the rest of their lives.

CAFÉ focuses on the examination of significant ideas and the education of advocates for examining those ideas in the fields of academics and business. Student-development activities will include research, both high-level academic and more applied, as well as introductory connections to organizations like the Foundation for Economic Education, the Institute for Humane Studies, Students for Liberty and others.

CAFÉ’s research includes but is not confined to examining the economic and social implications of the innovations that have produced the sharing economy in all its manifestations. These innovations include, for example, the automation of human tasks.

  • Connect with the Directors
  • CAFÉ Director Bios
  • CAFÉ Fellowships
  • News and Events
  • Research

Connect with the Directors

Welcome to the Colloquium for the Advancement of Free-Enterprise Education (CAFÉ). We are thrilled that you are interested in what this new fellowship program has to offer. CAFÉ teaches business students the history of economic ideas with an emphasis on free markets, free trade and innovation. Students learn about the foundations of economic freedom and the function of ownership rights in production and how this affects business practice. Students will leave the program with a grounded knowledge of the benefits of unfettered markets and their role in a country’s economic growth and prosperity.

Not limited to classroom instruction, the colloquium also plans outside activities for fellowship students, including conference trips and seminars.

We have selected our first group of students for the 2018 calendar year and will open up the application process again in the fall for the 2019 year. If you are interested, please contact Pam Villarreal, associate director.

Stan Liebowitz Co-Director
Pam Villarreal Associate Director

CAFÉ Director Bios

Peter Lewin

Peter Lewin

Director, CAFÉ

I was born and grew up in Johannesburg, South Africa. I received a BA (honors) degree in economics and history from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg in 1969. In September 1972, after teaching at the business school there, I left to study at the University of Chicago and earned a PhD in economics in 1979. I was fortunate to have had four Nobel Prize winners as teachers. In January 1979, I moved with my family to Dallas, where we have lived ever since. After seven years as an academic, I tried my hand in an entrepreneurial venture and joined a friend in a startup business called Soft Warehouse. Today it is called CompUSA. I was one of its founding shareholders. It was a difficult but very enlightening and successful experience. In 1992, I decided to return to academics, and I have been with the UT Dallas Naveen Jindal School of Management since 1997. I love my job. I have a passion for teaching and for economics. My wife and I were married in December 1969. We have four children and nine grandchildren.

Chris Tsai

Stan Liebowtiz

Co-Director, CAFÉ

Stan Liebowitz is the Ashbel Smith Professor of Managerial Economics in the Naveen Jindal School of Management at The University of Texas at Dallas. He holds degrees from Johns Hopkins University and UCLA.

Dr. Liebowitz’s research interests include the economic impact of new technologies, intellectual property and piracy, the economics of networks, pricing issues, and antitrust. In addition to five books, he has written numerous academic articles as well as policy reports and articles in popular outlets such as the Wall Street Journal, Reason Magazine and the National Review.

His research has been the focus of articles in the Economist, Financial Times, New York Times, Wall Street Journal and a program on the BBC. The papers he has written on network effects and lock-in culminated in a book, Winners, Losers & Microsoft: Competition and Antitrust in High Technology (Oakland, California: Independent Institute, 2001), which was positively reviewed in many outlets, including the Economist and the Wall Street Journal. His book Re-Thinking the Network Economy: The True Forces That Drive the Digital Marketplace (New York, AMACOM, 2002) was picked by Soundview Executive Books as one of the top 30 business books of 2002. His work on the impact of file-sharing was cited in the U.S. Supreme Court’s MGM Studios v. Grokster decision.

Dr. Liebowitz has been on the editorial board of several economics/law journals and is affiliated with the Cato Institute, Competitive Enterprise Institute, The Heartland Institute and the Independent Institute. He currently is president of the Society for Economic Research on Copyright Issues. He has consulted and testified internationally on issues related to antitrust, intellectual property and technology.

Pamela Villarreal

Pamela Villarreal

Associate Director, CAFÉ

Pamela Villarreal recently joined UT Dallas as CAFÉ’s associate director. She spent more than 10 years as a policy analyst/senior fellow for a free-market research organization. Her areas of research and specialty were personal savings and retirement accounts, tax reform, and government-entitlement programs. She authored or co-authored numerous publications on diverse topics such as medical malpractice reform, Medicaid reform, the disincentive effects of Social Security disability insurance and the fiscal future of Social Security and Medicare. She is a graduate of UT Dallas with a BS and an MS in economics. 

CAFÉ Fellowships

The Colloquium for the Advancement of Free-Enterprise Education (CAFÉ) Fellowship is a yearlong commitment involving courses and other activities. Each year, CAFÉ will offer graduate and undergraduate Jindal School of Management students the opportunity to apply for a fellowship. Students who are accepted will receive stipends, paid at the completion of each semester during the calendar year.

The fellowship applications for the 2019 cohorts will be available in fall 2018.

Undergraduate Fellows will receive $5,000 in exchange for participation in:

  • Coursework and colloquium activities, such as reading groups.
  • Interactive elective UT Dallas activities, such as memberships and leadership roles in student clubs.
  • Interactive off-campus elective activities, such as attendance at national or state conferences of like-minded groups of students.

Graduate Fellows will receive up to $10,000 a year, depending on merit, for participation in:

  • Research, coursework and colloquium activities.
  • Providing assistance and supervision to undergraduates involved in the program.
  • Interactive elective UT Dallas activities, such as memberships and leadership roles in student clubs.
  • Faculty research or the creation of viewpoint articles.
  • Interactive off-campus activities such as attendance at national or state conferences of like-minded groups of students.

These activities are also open to students who are not recipients of fellowships.

Required courses:

Course 1 Spring Semester (MECO6V99.501.18S 27383 or BA4V00.002.18S 27638) Comparative Institutions of Production and Distribution – IEconomic history of civilization and history of political-economic-business ideas as they impact production and distribution systems. Related examination of the ideas and canonical texts in the development of classical liberalism and its critics. Critical analysis of the principles and methods of current mainstream economics in understanding the business world.

Course 2 Fall Semester (MECOxxx –TBA or BAxxx – TBA) Comparative Institutions of Production and Distribution – II Comparative Economic Experiences A continuation of Course 1 involving discussions of disparate impacts of economic systems on business practice, economic growth and national wealth. Students will conduct research on divergent pairs of otherwise similar countries, such as East and West Germany, Taiwan and China, and North and South Korea.

News and Events

Coming soon.


Coming soon.