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Renaming 32LIF 

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32 Lincoln’s Inn Fields renamed to Sir Arthur Lewis (SAL) building

Thurday 24 March 2023 marked a moment that will be remembered by the London School of Economics and Political Science particularly the Department of Economics.

What was once 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields is now the Sir Arthur Lewis Building after the Nobel Prize laureate and LSE alumnus who studied, researched and taught at LSE.

Sir Arthur Lewis' daughter Elizabeth, her husband Steven as well as his grand-daughter Samantha and her fiance Khari, all travelled from the United-States of America to mark the occasion. 

Also present was the High Commissioner for St Lucia, family friends, LSE President and Vice Chancellor, Baroness Minouche Shafik, faculty members at the School and Staff working in the building. 

The building is home to the Department of Economics, the Centre for Economic Performance, the Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion, the Centre for Macroeconomics, and the International Growth Centre. 

St Lucia-born William Arthur Lewis, after whom the building is named, began his Bachelor of Commerce degree at LSE in 1933, after winning a government scholarship to study in Britain. He gained a First-Class degree in 1937 and subsequently obtained a scholarship to continue his studies at our School, earning his PhD in Industrial Economics.

While at LSE, he studied under John Hicks, Arnold Plant, Lionel Robbins and Friedrich Hayek. He was a member of staff from 1938 to 1948 and became a School Reader in Colonial Economics in 1947. Described as “one of our best teachers” he was LSE’s first Black academic and the UK’s first Black professor.

Sir Arthur Lewis was awarded the Nobel Prize for economics in 1979 for “pioneering research into economic development research with particular consideration of the problems of developing countries”.

March 2023

 

The Frontiers of Knowledge Award goes to Timothy Besley, Torsten Persson and Guido Tabellini for transforming political economy into a modern, empirical, interdisciplinary science

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The BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in Economics, Finance and Management has gone in this fifteenth edition to Timothy J. Besley (London School of Economics), Torsten Persson (Institute of International Economic Studies, Stockholm University) and Guido Tabellini (Bocconi University,) for “illuminating the connections between the economic and political worlds” and “transforming the field of political economy,” in the words of the committee’s citation. The three awardees, together with the late Alberto Alesina (Harvard University), have employed both theoretical and empirical tools to examine “how political institutions and processes shape economic policies and outcomes on one hand, and how economic factors shape political institutions on the other,” contributing decisively to shape the field of modern political economy.

Read more here.

Watch here

Weihan Ding condolences

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We are very sorry to share that Weihan Ding passed away on 20 January at the young age of 31.

Weihan spent 7 years at the LSE, earning his MSc, MRes, and PhD, all in the Department of Economics, before becoming a lecturer at the University of Exeter Business School.

He was diagnosed with Leukemia in Summer 2022 and sadly passed away after a valiant battle with the disease.

Weihan is survived by his four-year-old son Alfie and his wife Leyi. He will be sorely missed and remembered as a perfect son, a loving father, a great husband, an accomplished academic, an outstanding lecturer, and an amazing friend. He enriched the lives of all his family, friends, colleagues, and students with his ever-positive outlook and his knowledgeable, warm, friendly, and helpful ways.

We are in deep mourning over the loss of a widely respected and popular member of our community. All memories of him will be greatly treasured.

Please share your thoughts and memories through the link here: Tribute to Weihan

 

LSE Graduate Celebrates his Centennial

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Eric Edwin Lampard, Professor of Economic History and Historical Demography Emeritus at Stony Brook University, New York, celebrated his 100th birthday, along with former colleagues, students, relatives, and friends in Look Park, Northampton, Massachusetts, U.S.A. on September 26 2022.

  Lampard attended the London School of Economics in 1941-42 at Grove Lodge, Peterhouse, Cambridge to where it had been evacuated owing to the war.  During the war Lampard served in the Home Guard, Cambridge University Senior Training Corps, and the Royal Marines in brigade artillery units and combined operations. He served in the Atlantic, European, and Southeast Asian theatres, ending his combat duties at Singapore Naval Base, Seletar, in 1945-46. Returning to LSE in September 1946, he was elected student secretary of Passfield House, Cartwright Gardens, Holborn, the school’s first experience with dormitory life. Among Lampard’s distinguished teachers at LSE either before and/or after his war service were R.H. Tawney, H.J. Laski, Herman Finer, W.I. Jennings, F.J. Fisher, Lionel Robbins, and Nicholas Kaldor.

    In August 1948 Lampard was awarded the BSe (Econ) degree (2 upper div.) While at LSE during and after the war, Lampard was a member of the LSE Hockey Club. Meanwhile, he had obtained a position as instructor in history at Cornell College, Iowa, in the USA. He went on to study at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where in 1954 he completed a Ph.D. in economic history and land economics with his dissertation on “The Rise of the Dairy Industry: A Study in Agricultural Change, 1820-1920.” This study was awarded the David Clark Everest Prize in Economic History and was published by the State Historical Society of Wisconsin Press in 1963. Lampard was also awarded a post-Doctoral Fellowship in Economic History at the University of Pennsylvania in 1954-55 where he studied inter alia with Simon Kuznets and Dorothy Thomas, publishing “The History of Cities in the Economically-Advanced Areas,” Economic Development and Cultural Change, vol 3 (1955), pp. 81-156 (later reprinted in several other publications.) In 1957 he published Industrial Revolution: Interpretations and Perspectives (Washington, D.C.: American Historical Association 1957) pp.40. In Cities and Markets: Studies in the Organization of Human Space Presented to Eric E. Lampard, Rondo Cameron and Leo F. Schnore eds. University Press of America, Lanham, Md, New York, and Oxford, 1997) pp.372, his published bibliography then listed 43 publications. Lampard also received appointments from such research enterprises as Resources for the Future, the Brookings Institution, and the National Research Council. During 1968-73 he served as American Review Correspondent for The Economic History Review (UK) and directed the Graduate Program in Economic History at the University of Wisconsin, Madison to which he had returned in 1959-70.

    In the course of his long academic career Lampard also taught at City College of New York, Columbia Univ., Smith College, and the University of Wisconsin and was a visiting professor at Stanford, Harvard, and Yale Universities. He also contributed “Structural Changes: Introductory Essay” to Inventing Times Square, William R. Taylor ed., pp. 15-35, 372-75. (New York: Russel Sage Foundation 1991), republished by Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 1996, as a paperback.

  Professor Eric Lampard married Marie Vera Turbow, a children’s art teacher and Russian art history scholar, on September 22nd, 1951, in New York City. They enjoyed 69 years together before her death in 2020. They had one daughter, Sophie Lampard Dennis, and three grandchildren.

     Among the many messages received on his centennial birthday was a large colour photograph of H.M. Queen Elizabeth II sending Lampard her “congratulations and best wishes” by Royal Mail from Buckingham Palace, 05.09.22. 

December 2022

 

Ricardo Reis interviewed by Tim Phillips on the subject: How did inflation get so high? 

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On the groundbreaking new research, commentary and policy ideas from the world's leading economists podcast VoxTalks Economics presented by Tim Phillips, Ricardo tells Tim why many advanced economies ended up with inflation levels that we haven’t seen for a generation. Did policymakers make mistakes, or do we need to change the entire policy framework?

Find out Ricardo's answer on the podcast link here.

November 2022

 

LSE Environment Week 

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A successful Environment Week: 19-23 September 2022.

The Economics of Environment and Energy Programme (EEE), International Growth Centre (IGC) and Programme on Innovation and Diffusion (POID) within the LSE Economics Department worked with partners at the school and across the world to use Environment Week to encourage economists from all fields of economics to work on environmental issues and to connect this work to policy change.

During LSE Environment Week, the speakers highlighted how this work is urgently needed given rising concerns over climate change, pollution and environmental degradation. Along with the major challenge of achieving a better balance between human activity and the natural environment, without sacrificing economic growth. 

"It was a fantastic event and great to see more environmental work happening in the department," said Robin Burgess, Professor of Economics, Co-Founder and Director of the International Growth Centre and Director of the Economics of Environment and Energy Research Programme at the LSE.

Click here to watch the live footage on YouTube

 Find the programme here.

October 2022

 

Tim Besley elected member of Academia Europaea

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Congratulations to Professor Tim Besley who has been elected a member of Academia Europaea.  

The object of Academia Europaea is the advancement and propagation of excellence in scholarship in the humanities, law, the economic, social, and political sciences, mathematics, medicine, and all branches of natural and technological sciences anywhere in the world for the public benefit and for the advancement of the education of the public of all ages. The aim of the Academy is to promote European research, advise governments and international organisations in scientific matters, and further interdisciplinary and international research.

You can find out more here

August 2022

 

Dr Swati Dhingra to join the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee

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Congratulations to Swati Dhingra who has been appointed to the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) by Chancellor Rishi Sunak.

Swati Dhingra will join the MPC on 9 August for a three-year term, replacing current external member Michael Saunders.

The MPC is responsible for deciding what monetary policy action the Bank of England will take to keep inflation low and stable. It meets eight times a year to set the Bank of England’s own interest rate.

Chancellor of the exchequer, Rishi Sunak said: “Dr Swati Dhingra’s experience in international economics will bring valuable new expertise to the MPC. I am delighted to appoint her to this role and look forward to seeing her contribution to policymaking in the coming years.”

May 2022

 

Professor Ricardo Reis awarded an ERC Advanced Grant

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Congratulations to Ricardo Reis who has been awarded an ERC Advanced Grant for the project DISINF (The Distributional Consequences of Inflation). The grant will run for 5 years (2022-2027).

Ricardo's research will use detailed micro data from the financial sector to measure what is the exposure of different groups to inflation risk, which institutions sell and buy inflation risk, and how this affects the differential pass-through of inflation to nominal interest rates. These redistributions can cause costly financial crisis and are often behind financial repression measures.

Second, it will use models of non-financial firms that are differentially exposed to inflation risk and are likely to have their operations impacted by unexpected shocks. The heterogeneous impact of inflation across firms generate a new source of costs of inflation, as they lead to distortions in the allocation of inputs and production that are amplified by price rigidity.

Third, the composition and maturity of the public debt redistributes risk between current generations and future ones. Empirically, the extent to which the government shifts inflation risk between itself and the private economy varies considerably over time, and this affects the cyclicality of the tightness of the government budget constraint as well as the incentives to inflate away the debt. For the central bank, inflation has a differential effect on the attractiveness of banknotes, public digital currency, and private digital currency, and this in turn determines the seignorage revenue that central banks earn and so the financial constraints that monetary policy faces in the pursuit of stable inflation.

Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, said: “The ERC Advanced Grants support ground-breaking researchers throughout Europe. It gives our talents the possibility to realise their creative ideas. Their pioneering work contribute to solve the most pressing social, economic and environmental challenges.”

Read the ERC’s full press release

May 2022

 

Professor Silvana Tenreyro wins the 2022 EEA Birgit Grodal Award

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Congratulations to Silvana Tenreyro, winner of the 2022 Birgit Grodal Award for her significant contributions in applied macroeconomics.

On bestowing the award, the European Economic Association (EEA) said:

‘Silvana has made significant contributions in monetary and international economics. Her papers on monetary policy transmission and on the Phillips curve have been influential both in academia and in policy circles. Her work on volatility and development has improved our understanding of the roles of technological diversification and of the characteristics of shocks hitting emerging and advanced economies in the growth process. She is also the author of a widely cited methodological paper on the estimation of gravity equations in international trade.

Moreover, she has an excellent record of public service, holding positions in various professional societies and serving as external member of the Bank of England Monetary committee.’

The EEA Council bestows the Award, once every two years, to a European-based female economist who has made a significant contribution to the Economics profession. The Award is named after Birgit Grodal, the first female elected President of the EEA, who sadly passed away before she took up her presidency. Find out more.

On receiving the award, Silvana Tenreyro said:

'I’m very grateful to the Award Committee, to my wonderful co-authors, with whom I carried out the research mentioned in the award, and to my family for their constant support.'

April 2022

 

Professors Oriana Bandiera and John Van Reenen named Foreign Honorary Members of AEA

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Congratulations to Oriana Bandiera and John Van Reenen, who have been named Foreign Honorary Members of the American Economic Association (AEA).

The AEA says, 'The Foreign Honorary Members award is presented to foreign economists of distinction. Honorees are elected by the American Economic Association's Executive Committee upon recommendation from the Honors and Awards committee.'

Read the press release announcing the AEA's award recipients for 2022.

April 2022

 

Dr Rachael Meager awarded a 2022 AEJ Best Paper Award

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Annually, an article is selected from each American Economic Journal (AEJ) from nominated articles, for the AEJ Best Paper Award.

Congratulations to Rachael Meager who has been awarded a 2022 AEJ Best Paper Award for the article "Understanding the Average Impact of Microcredit Expansions: A Bayesian Hierarchical Analysis of Seven Randomized Experiments," in AEJ: Applied Economics.

In this article, Rachael Meager estimates the average effect of microcredit as a tool to alleviate poverty across seven studies. She finds that the impact on household business and consumption variables is unlikely to be transformative and may even be negligible. There is also reasonable external validity of these varied evaluations of microcredit. (AEJ: Applied Economics, Volume 11, No. 1, January 2019)

April 2022

 


Earlier in 2021/2022

Dr Ethan Ilzetzki awarded a 2021 ERC Consolidator Grant

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Congratulations to Dr Ethan Ilzetzki on being awarded a 2021 European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator Grant for the project, ‘Fiscal Policy, Productivity, and Growth: New Data and New Approaches’.

This project investigates how government spending and tax (fiscal) policies affect not only the business cycle but also an economy’s productivity and long run potential. Modern economic approaches to fiscal policy put a firewall between aggregate demand and aggregate supply. The premise of this project is that cyclical policies may affect the economy’s productive potential, not only on short term inflation and unemployment. The project will draw modern data, but also on archival data from historical episodes, including the US military buildup during the Second World War and post-war public investments.

ERC Consolidator Grants support mid-career researchers, helping them consolidate their teams and conduct pioneering research.

March 2022

 

Roberto Maura-Rivero named a finalist of the Meta PhD Research Fellowship

 

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Congratulations to PhD Economics student Roberto Maura-Rivero on being named a finalist of the 2022 Meta PhD Research Fellowship.

The Meta PhD Research Fellowship programme awards PhD candidates conducting cutting-edge research on emerging topics. This year, the Fellowship received over 2,300 applications from over 100 universities worldwide and selected 37 Fellows from 24 universities. Find out more here.

We spoke to Roberto about his achievement:

‘Machine Learning and Deep Learning are revolutionizing all disciplines and new amazing discoveries are made every year. In my PhD, I am working on a theoretical understanding of how these tools can be modified to help us answer economic questions and how to apply them to real problems.

It is an honour to be a finalist of the Meta PhD fellowship and I feel that this recognition will increase the attention on this exciting area of study.’

February 2022


 

Sir John Hicks Prizes 2020/21

 

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We're delighted to announce the winners of the 2020/21 Sir John Hicks Prizes for MRes/PhD students: Soroush Sabet and Lukasz Rachel.

For outstanding performance in the MRes Economics: Soroush Sabet

Soroush Sabet achieved distinctions across the board on his MRes courses. His EC599 research paper, “Business Cycle Dynamics and Inequality along the Development Path”, impressed the markers with its "solid nontrivial tools and solid writeup". One professor described it as "super interesting and so is the direction in which (he) is thinking... overall, this is very good, and an even more promising start to a broader project!”

For an outstanding doctoral thesis: Lukasz Rachel for "Essays in Applied Macroeconomics"

In his thesis, Lukasz Rachel looks at the impact of “leisure services”, free services, like social media, which require time and attention from consumers, and incorporates these into an otherwise standard macro model of the economy. The selection panel described the thesis as “a highly original piece of research with rich implications: (the author) shows that these new services only emerge once economies are rich enough and their emergence explains both a fall in working hours and in productivity growth”.  

Lukasz joined the LSE Department of Economics as an undergraduate in 2004 and was awarded his PhD in 2021. He is currently a postdoctoral research associate in the Department of Economics at Princeton University, and later this year he will take up an assistant professorship at the University of Warwick. He retains his connection to LSE via his membership of the Centre for Economic Performance.

Speaking of the award, Lukasz said, "(This) is wonderful news and I am very honoured. It’s incredibly motivating to be recognised with this prize, and I hope my current and future work will live up to the standard!"


 

Professor Philippe Aghion awarded the Erasmus Medal of the Academia Europaea

 

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Congratulations to Professor Philippe Aghion who has been awarded the Academia Europaea’s Erasmus Medal.

The Erasmus Medal honours a European scholar who has maintained, over a sustained period of time, an outstanding level of international scholarship as recognised by peers: ‘It is perhaps the highest recognition for purely scholarly achievements that the Academy can bestow on a scholar.’ Read more.

Professor Aghion will receive the medal at the Academy’s Annual Conference, scheduled to take place in Barcelona on 26-27 October 2022, and will deliver the accompanying AE-Heinz-Nixdorf Erasmus Lecture.

Philippe Aghion has been described by the Academy as ‘a truly global giant in his academic field with a strong European basis and worldwide recognition due to an enormous amount of publications in top scientific journals, through widely recognized books and many influential societal policy debates. As one of the world's leading theorists, in his publications he collaborates intensively with the best empirical researchers to deal with pressing challenges of high policy relevance to obtain the strong attention not only from the academic community but also among policymakers and in the wider public.’

Read more on the Academy’s website.

February 2022


 

Professor Sir Tim Besley to advise UK Government on levelling up

 

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Congratulations to Professor Sir Tim Besley who has been appointed to the UK Government’s Levelling Up Advisory Council.

The Council, announced in the Government’s Levelling Up White Paper, contains leaders of academia, industry and civil society, who will support Ministers by advising on the design, delivery and impact of levelling up policy. It is one of five “mutually reinforcing pillars” identified in the White Paper as being key to ensuring the government delivers on its levelling up agenda. 

Professor Susana Mourato, Pro-Director of Research at LSE, said: “Regional inequality in the UK is not a new problem but it is a hugely significant one, leading to typically lower education, health and economic outcomes for those living in more deprived areas. If these inequalities are to be addressed, it is vital that the right policies are put in place now, and I am delighted that Professor Sir Tim Besley will be advising government on this issue.” 

Professor Sir Tim Besley said: “There are significant and entrenched inequalities between and within regions of the UK that need urgently to be addressed. If we are to create sustainable change, policymakers will need to consider many factors, including infrastructure, education, healthcare, skills and housing. I am pleased to be contributing to the government’s work to address these key issues and look forward to the work ahead.”

Read the full article in LSE news.

February 2022


 

Professor Lord Nicholas Stern awarded the 2022 Carnot Prize

 

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Congratulations to Professor Lord Nicholas Stern on receiving the 2022 Carnot Prize, awarded by the Kleinman Center for Energy Policy at the University of Pennsylvania. Lord Stern will accept this prize at a ceremony at the University in April 2022.

The Carnot Prize honours those who have revolutionized our understanding of energy policy, and is named in memory of French scientist Sadi Carnot. Find out more.

Lord Stern is recognised for his urgent call to action on climate change- sustained over a period of decades (notably through the 2006 Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change and his 2015 book, Why Are We Waiting?) and his ‘unmatched' focus on bringing the best scholarship on climate change and the energy transition to the public sphere. Read more.

About the prize, Stern said: “The Carnot Prize is a great honour for which I am very grateful. It is a privilege to join the very distinguished group of past recipients. The opportunities in transforming our energy systems changed enormously for the better in the last 15 years or so. They are at the centre of a new approach to growth which can carry tremendous benefits in human wellbeing across the board. And they were quite rightly at the heart of the deliberations at COP26 in November 2021 in Glasgow. I am looking forward very much to being at the University of Pennsylvania in April.”

Mark Alan Hughs, founding faculty director of the Kleinham Center for Energy Policy, said: “Nicholas Stern sounded an early alarm on the economic impacts of climate change, but even more significantly he has contributed his economic analyses to other scientific perspectives that together provide broader guidance to decision-makers toward a cost-effective transition to a sustainable energy system consistent with the challenges of climate risk. For this we celebrate him.”

Read more.

January 2022


 

Dr Dimitra Petropoulou appointed to the QAA SBS Advisory Group for Economics

 

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Congratulations to Dr Dimitra Petropoulou who has been appointed to the Advisory Group determining how the Economics Subject Benchmark Statements, being reviewed in 2022, should be updated.

Subject Benchmark Statements (SBS) describe the nature of study and the academic standards expected of graduates in specific subject areas. They show what graduates might reasonably be expected to know, do and understand at the end of their studies. They are used as reference points in the design, delivery and review of academic programmes.

QAA leads the development of the Subject Benchmark Statements and reviews them on a cyclical basis. Find out more.

Dr Petropoulou shares a few words about the appointment: "It's an honour to be joining the Economics SBS Advisory Group and I look forward to working with fellow group members to shape the framework for the design and delivery of economics degrees."

January 2022


 

Dr Xavier Jaravel awarded a ERC 2021 Starting Grant

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Congratulations to Dr Xavier Jaravel who has been awarded a European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant for the project,  'Prices and Inequality'.

397 early-career researchers won ERC Starting Grants; '€619 million will be invested in excellent projects dreamed up by scientists and scholars. Grants worth on average €1.5 million will help ambitious younger researchers launch their own projects, form their own teams and pursue their best ideas.' Find out more here.

Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, said: 'I am looking forward to seeing what new breakthroughs and opportunities the new ERC laureates will bring, and how they will inspire young people to follow their curiosity and make discoveries for the benefit of us all.'

Dr Jaravel shares a few words: 

"The ERC starting grant is a fantastic opportunity to develop an ambitious research agenda, thanks to the unparalleled resources it provides to assemble a team and fund data access over 5 years. My project will focus on "inflation inequality", the idea that households face different inflation rates, which can increase inequality but also poverty rates. From a policy perspective, this topic has become even more relevant in recent months, with mounting concerns about sustained inflation going forward. Thanks to the ERC grant, I hope to provide a comprehensive analysis of inflation inequality in dozens of countries, using new data, new models and new conceptual frameworks."

January 2022

 

 

 

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Location, 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PH