News 2012-2013

New Arrival in the Department of Economics

The Department welcomes the following new faculty member:


Dr Michael Peters (Lecturer in Economics)

Michael Peters received his PhD from MIT in 2012 and has spent the last year as a post-doctoral associate with the Cowles Foundation at Yale University.  

He will be teaching economic policy to undergraduates and macroeconomics to research students in the forthcoming session.

Michael’s main fields are macroeconomics and development, focussing on long-run growth and development economics. In his job market paper, he examined on a currently developing country – Indonesia – and analysed the process of firm dynamics of manufacturing plants. Currently, he is taking a more historical perspective on economic development to study the long-run impact of labour migration on the local economy by exploiting the expulsion and resettlement of German minorities after the Second World War.

August 2013

Dr Jonathan Leape appointed as Executive Director of the International Growth Centre


Dr Jonathan Leape has been appointed as Executive Director of the International Growth Centre (IGC). He will start his new position on 1 September. Dr Ibrahim Stevens has been appointed as Country Programme Director and will start on 1 August.

The IGC, which is based at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in partnership with the University of Oxford, provides independent and demand-led growth policy advice directly to governments based on rigorous analysis and frontier research. It is funded by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID). 

Commenting on his appointment, Dr Leape said: “I am absolutely delighted. This is a tremendous opportunity and I welcome the challenge of leading the centre through its next phase, working with our international partners to achieve the sustained economic growth that is vital to lifting millions of people out of poverty.”

Earlier this year, the UK government announced a major £51million investment in the IGC to enable it to expand its work from 12 to 15 countries. More information here.

IGC Director Professor Robin Burgess said, “I am pleased to welcome Jonathan and Ibrahim to the IGC. These are two truly outstanding appointments. They will provide the leadership to take the Centre through its next phase, working with international partners to raise millions of people out of the misery of poverty.”

Jonathan Leape is on the Economics faculty at the LSE, where he has been director of the highly innovative “LSE 100 The LSE Course: Understanding the Causes of Things” since 2009. He is also founding director of the Centre for Research into Economics and Finance in Southern Africa, which was established at LSE in 1990 as an initiative of the Commonwealth Heads of Government to support the democratic transition in South Africa. His research focuses on taxation and regulation, including congestion charging, and includes publications in the Journal of Public Economics and the Journal of Economic Perspectives. He has a PhD in Economics from Harvard University and degrees from Oxford University and Harvard University.

For further information, please visit the LSE News and Media pages.

July 2013

Professor Lord Nicholas Stern takes up his position as President of the British Academy


Professor Lord Nicholas Stern took up his position as President of the British Academy on 18 July. He joins a roster of major figures in the academic and public life of the UK, including Sir Keith Thomas, Sir Isaiah Berlin and Baroness O’Neill.

Professor Lord Stern succeeds Professor Sir Adam Roberts after a four-year tenure. He is the first economist, and the first President from LSE since Lord Lionel Robbins held the post in 1962.

In his inaugural speech, Lord Stern set out his vision, saying: "I believe that were at a historic point of change. The world faces a lack of trust in institutions and a lack of confidence in existing ideas and models: it is hungry for new insights into meaning, identity and policy.” He emphasised that research and the creativity of scholarly work lies at the heart of the Academy and enables it to lead and speak on behalf of the humanities and social sciences.  “The power of ideas”, Lord Stern said, “should never be underestimated.”

A leading British economist and academic, Lord Stern was elected as a Fellow of the Academy in 1993. Since 2007 he has been the IG Patel Professor of Economics and Government, and also Chair of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics. He has taught and researched at universities around the world and was knighted for services to economics in 2004.

Throughout his distinguished career, he has made a major contribution to the economics of public policy and to development economics. As head of the Government Economic Service, he led the ground-breaking Stern Review on the economics of climate change, published in 2006, which has had great influence around the world. He has been Chief Economist of the EBRD and of the World Bank and has served as adviser to governments, businesses and NGOs in many countries and as Second Permanent Secretary of the UK Treasury.

To read the unedited press release, plus the full text of Lord Stern's inaugural speech as President, please visit the British Academy website.

July 2013

Congratulations to all our graduands


The Department offers its warmest congratulations to our graduands on the day they become graduates of the School, and join our global network of alumni. We know how tough the programmes are, and how hard you have worked during your time here, and you can be justifiably proud of your achievements today.


If you would like to keep in touch with us, there is an LSE Economics Alumni group on Facebook, and of course the LSEEcon Twitter feed will keep you up to date with what's going on in the Economics Department. We are always interested to hear what our alumni are doing, so please do stay in touch.

July 2013

Professor Christine Whitehead participating in Scottish Government-funded research to seek more funding for rent sector


Professor Christine Whitehead from the Department of Economics, LSE and Kathleen Scanlon of the Cambridge Centre for Housing and Planning Research (CCHPR) have been appointed by the trade body Homes for Scotland (HFS) to address the reasons why pension funds don't invest in building homes for rent in the UK.

The Scottish Government-funded research will devise ways to attract institutional investment that would encourage more building. The research will be presented to stakeholders including investors in October.

The academics believe the issues keeping investment out of new-build houses are due to the wrong culture and a lack of scale.

Professor Whitehead said: “At the moment the private rented sector doesn’t get investment. Currently houses available in that sector come from existing housing stock. That is depressing new build.” She believes that investors are now looking for different types of long-term investments as traditional assets such as gilts and equities fail to produce adequate ­returns.

July 2013

New Arrivals in the Department of Economics  

The Department welcomes the following new faculty members:


Dr Andrew Ellis (Lecturer in Economics)

Andrew Ellis received his PhD from Boston University earlier this year. He works in microeconomic theory, particularly decision theory and political economy, and will be teaching microeconomic theory and applied economic theory in the forthcoming session.

Andrew’s current research studies the economic modelling of inattention. Inattention has many interesting economic implications ranging from sticky prices to extreme price swings to under-diversification, but the behavioural foundations of the models that permit inattention are not yet well understood. His work seeks to improve our understanding of the role that inattention can play in economics by analysing the foundations for these models.


Professor Alessandro Gavazza (Professor of Economics)

A former student of the LSE Economics Department, Alessandro Gavazza graduated from the MSc Econometrics and Mathematical Economics with Distinction in 2000, gained his PhD at New York University in 2005, and taught at the Yale School of Management, and then the Stern School of Business at NYU.

Working primarily in industrial organization and applied microeconomics, Alessandro’s recent work focuses on empirical analyses of role of intermediaries in markets with frictions. In the forthcoming session, he will be teaching econometrics to MSc students and the economics of industry to research students. 

July 2013

Dr Greg Fischer has been awarded a Major Review Teaching Prize

Congratulations to Dr Greg Fischer who has been awarded a Major Review Teaching Prize by LSE's Teaching and Learning Centre.

Major Review Teaching Prizes are awarded to staff who get outstanding feedback from their students, innovate in their approach to course design and delivery, actively develop their own teaching and support others.

The Director of LSE's Teaching and Learning Centre, Dr Liz Barnett, said: “Greg is an excellent lecturer – hugely engaging, pitches his teaching at just the right level for the students he’s working with and puts tremendous energy into motivating students and getting them thinking and questioning.”


Dr Greg Fischer said: "While I think there are a lot of really valuable new technologies in education, my classes are pretty low tech. One of the greatest opportunities students have at LSE is for direct intellectual engagement with faculty and their peers. I don’t want to get in the way of that.

One low tech solution that I find very helpful is to end every class with a short 'quiz'. I ask students what, if anything, they found confusing? What, if anything, was particularly interesting? And how was the pace? I’ve tried doing this online, but find the immediacy and near 100% response rate that comes from doing this on scraps of paper at the end of class to be the best way to see how things are going ... I hope that every year a few of my students learn something that changes the way they think about the world. Maybe this gives them the tools to make a difference in areas that matter to them. I never see the counterfactual, so I don’t know if this is actually happening. Some of my students seem to think that it is, and I find that very gratifying. As for what it takes to achieve this, I really don’t know, but some combination of hard work and empathy is probably a pretty good start."

For further information about the LSE Teaching prizes and interviews with all the winners, please visit the LSE Teaching and Learning Centre pages.  

July 2013

Professor Padró i Miquel has been awarded the XII Fundación Banco Herrero prize


Professor Gerard Padró i Miquel has been awarded the XII Fundación Banco Herrero prize for his research career in the fields of Political Economy and Development Economics.


The Fundación Banco Herrero created this prize in 2002 in order to acknowledge and promote research in economics, business and social sciences that contributes to social welfare. It is awarded annually to a Spanish researcher younger than 40 years old and it has become the most prestigious early career award for research in social sciences in Spain. 

Previous recipients of this award include Xavier Sala-i-Martin, Luis Garicano, Pol Antràs and Jesús Fernández-Villaverde. 

For further information, please visit the page of La Nueva España (in Spanish).

June 2013

Professor Alan Manning at the launch of new project on the Future of the National Minimum Wage and the Low Pay Commission

The minimum wage at 15 – fully grown-up? The launch of a major new project on the Future of the National Minimum Wage and the Low Pay Commission

Date: Thursday 20th June
Time: 09:30am to 11:00am
Venue: Resolution Foundation, 23 Savile Row, London W1S 2ET

Since the National Minimum Wage became law in 1998 it has raised the pay of the lowest earners in the UK. Extreme low pay has fallen by nearly 80 per cent and there is a broad academic consensus that the minimum wage has not caused unemployment. Yet low pay more generally remains a major problem, with one in five workers still earning too little to afford a basic standard of living. In the last 15 years, a great deal has been learned about the impacts of minimum wages. This event launches a major new project that will apply these lessons to the future of the National Minimum Wage and the Low Pay Commission, exploring what more the policy could do to help tackle contemporary low pay.

The new work will be led by an expert panel chaired by Professor Sir George Bain, founding chair of the Low Pay Commission. At the event, Professor Sir George Bain will give an opening address on the lessons learned from first 15 years of the minimum wage and the challenges that lie ahead. James Plunkett will present new Resolution Foundation analysis on the minimum wage and its prospects in the coming years.


Professor Alan Manning (LSE) (pictured) and Nicola Smith (TUC) will respond, sharing their views on the challenge and important avenues for future policy development. Allegra Stratton (BBC Newsnight) will chair the debate.

You can sign up at the Resolution Foundation pages.

The event will be live-tweeted at #futureNMW

June 2013

Professor Christopher Pissarides knighted for his services to economics


Professor Christopher Pissarides is one of four leading LSE academics whose expertise and service have been recognised in the Queen's Birthday Honours list.

Professor Pissarides is a School Professor of Economics and Political Science at LSE, and a Fellow of the British Academy. His research interests focus on several topics of macroeconomics, notably labour, economic growth and economic policy. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Economics in 2010 for his highly influential work on search costs in labour markets, which highlighted the ways in which unemployment, job vacancies and wages are affected by regulation and economic policy, and has influenced policy-making across the world. His work on search models has also been influential in other areas of economics, especially the housing market.

The other LSE academics that have been included in the Queen's Birthday Honours list are:

Professor David Metcalf, Emeritus Professor of Industrial Relations and Chair of the Migration Advisory Committee, for his services to UK migration policy.

Professor John Hills, Professor of Social Policy and Director of the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion, for his services to social policy.

Professor Judith Rees, lately Director of the LSE and current Director of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and Environment, for her services to higher education. 

For further information please visit the LSE News and Media and the UK Government pages.

June 2013

Economics undergraduate student receives the Kaneda Award for 'Outstanding Young Economist' at the Carroll Round


The Department offers its warm congratulations to Yi Jie Gwee, third-year BSc Econometrics and Mathematical Economics student, Yi Jie who has just received the Kaneda Award for “Outstanding Young Economist” at the Carroll Round – the premier international undergraduate research conference in Washington DC organised annually by Georgetown University.

The Kaneda Award is based on the paper given and the presentation. It is one of three awards currently given at the final Sunday breakfast of this this annual late April event.

His paper, ‘3Bs And No As: Expansion of Higher Education in the UK – Bane, Boon or Boom?’ presents his empirical investigation of the impact of the expansion of higher education on wages in this country. Yi Jie came to his research question because of concern and curiosity about the likely impact of the recent and projected expansion of higher education in his native Singapore. He turned to the British experience as it offers something akin to a natural experiment and good data. He found the apparent impact in Britain to be significant and positive, or as he put it more technically ‘I exploited the exogenous variations induced by the government’s expansionary education policies. Using a difference-in-differences strategy I found that the overall expansion appears to have a positive effect on wages.’

April 2013

32 Lincoln's Inn Fields Official Opening


On Monday 29 April, HRH The Princess Royal officially opened the newest landmark building of the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), 32 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, previously known as the Land Registry building.

The Princess Royal, who is the Chancellor of the University of London (UoL), was met by LSE Chair Sir Peter Sutherland, LSE Director Professor Craig Calhoun and UoL Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir Adrian Smith. She was given a tour of the newly opened building and was able to see it in operation as well as viewing a display on the research conducted by the academics based in the building. Her visit culminated in a reception, where she unveiled a plaque and met with LSE students and staff as well as others involved in its redesign and renovation.

LSE Director Professor Craig Calhoun said: “LSE is a vibrant and exciting place to be and it was an honour to show HRH The Princess Royal around our newest working building. While we would be the first to admit that our campus has not always measured up to our academic reputation, we are always working to raise the bar. With 32LIF joining our flagship New Academic Building, and our forthcoming Saw Swee Hock Student Centre, I believe we can now justifiably be as proud of our estate as we are our academic reputation.”


The design approach for the new building was influenced by the property’s Grade II listing and its location within the Strand Conservation Area.

A number of features have been retained, including the authentic brick facades and pitched slate roofscapes, which have traditional Dutch‐style gables with ornate turrets at each corner.


The Chief Registrar’s Room has also been restored, and the main entrance hall, which possesses a number of period features such as mosaic terrazzo flooring, marble columns and decorative wooden panelling, has been enhanced.

A new, single-storey glass and steel entrance pavilion has also been constructed to improve accessibility and provide the required secure entry and foyer space for a large number of students.

For more information please visit the LSE News and Media  pages.  

April 2013

Economics at LSE since 1895: An exhibition

Date: Monday 29 April 2013
Time: 4-6pm
Venue: B.07, 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields


32 Lincoln's Inn Fields will be officially opened on Monday 29 April. To celebrate the opening LSE Archives will be putting on an exhibition which will be open to all LSE staff and students to visit.

The exhibition will feature information on the history of economics at LSE since the School’s foundation in 1895, including why the founders believed a School of Economics and Political Science was necessary; the developments during the School’s early years, when LSE became part of the University of London and then established the country’s first BSc degree in economics; the expansion during the directorship of William Beveridge (1919-37); the Department of Economics to the 1960s and a list of convenors (heads of the Department) since 1962. 


The exhibition will also feature photographs of prominent economists from the School’s archive. There will be some originals from the archives and rare books collections on display, usually under lock and key in the Library, including:

* A merchants guidebook from 1643
* A volume by William Petty (1623-87), one of the founders of economic science
* The first edition of The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith
* Early graphs illustrating the economy in the 18th century
* Diary entry by Hugh Dalton regarding his teaching arrangements at LSE in 1919.


Suggested hashtag for this event for Twitter users: #LSE32LIF

The Economics at LSE since 1895 exhibition is now live in the LSE Digital Library.

This exhibition is free but only open to LSE staff and students. You need a valid LSE ID card to enter 32 LIF and the exhibition.

April 2013

Danny Quah LSE Lecture Malaysia: "Nobody's world, everybody's problem? Who's afraid of a little global hegemony?"


The LSE Office for University of London International Programmes invites alumni of the University of London International Programmes to an Economics lecture titled: Nobody’s world, everybody’s problem? Who’s afraid of a little global hegemony? by Professor Danny Quah, The London School of Economics and Political Science.

As Malaysia's 13th General Elections unfold, it is clear that the economic fortunes of the country are linked to the ebb and flow of shifts in the global economy. What forces will shape those global changes? Which will be most significant for Malaysia's economic success? Professor Danny Quah will discuss the significance in the last three decades of the dramatic shift eastwards in the world’s economic centre. His lecture will debate issues including:

* Have the last 30 years of growth in the East been an aberration, or has the East built the political and technological systems needed to keep growth going?
* Has the East grown only because the West provided the world a consumption-driven engine of growth?
* Does the East need to become more like the West?
* Will continuing democratization be blocked by the democratic publics of the West?

The lecture will be chaired by Dr Keith Sharp, with special thanks to Datuk Dr Paul T.H. Chan, Vice Chancellor & President Co-Founder of HELP University College Sdn Bhd.

For further information, please visit the online magazine: London Connection

April 2013

UK invests £51 million in International Growth Centre

The UK government has announced a major £51million investment to the International Growth Centre (IGC) to enable it to expand its work from 12 to 15 countries.

The IGC, which is based at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in partnership with the University of Oxford, provides independent and demand-led growth policy advice directly to governments based on rigorous analysis and frontier research. It is funded by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID). Since its launch in 2008, the IGC has provided independent advice to 13 countries and managed 10 research programmes spanning topics such as agriculture, trade, infrastructure and urbanisation and state capabilities.

The £51 million investment will enable it to continue operations in existing partner countries across South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, but also to expand its work through a renewed focus on key growth concerns. The IGC has already helped governments in Pakistan, Rwanda, Bihar and Bangladesh to reform their tax structures in order to boost revenue collection and has assisted governments in Ghana, Zambia and Mozambique to work towards harnessing wealth from their mineral resources.


LSE Department of Economics Professor Robin Burgess, director of the IGC, said:

“Increasing economic growth is critical to improving living standards for millions of people in the developing world to lift them out of poverty. Providing concrete evidence based on rigorous analysis and frontier research on what policies work to engender economic growth is a key offering of the IGC to policy makers across Africa and Asia. We are delighted that DFID’s continued support will enable us to deepen and expand our work in bringing the worlds of research and policy closer together.”

Professor Paul Collier, University of Oxford and co-director of the ICG said:
“Governments of poor countries struggle with daunting problems, some unique to their own circumstances. Soundly-based policy choices that respond to these problems can pay dividends far in excess of the cost of the underlying knowledge. Global excellence in knowledge that helps poor countries to help themselves - the mission of the IGC - is money well-spent.”

Justine Greening, UK secretary of state for international development, made the announcement in a speech at the London Stock Exchange. She addressed Britain’s continued investment in international development and said:
“International Development is in our interests not just because it creates new markets, but because I believe it can deliver a more balanced, resilient global economy…I want DFID to do more to help build up strong and investable business environments in the developing countries themselves. That means helping countries build their own tax base, squeezing out corruption and providing the technical advice that means when economic growth does happen, countries are well placed to then reap and reinvest the gains.”

For further information, please visit the LSE News and Media pages.

April 2013

Professor Danny Quah to give lecture at the University of Singapore


LSE-NUS Public Lecture: "Managing No One's World: In Whose Interest?" by Danny Quah, Kuwait Professor Economics and International Development at the LSE


5-7pm Wednesday 03 April 2013
Seminar Room B, The Shaw Foundation Building
National University of Singapore

Few observers today doubt that the last three decades have seen a dramatic shift eastwards in the world’s economic center. But profound uncertainty surrounds the significance of that event. This lecture evaluates what is known about this Great Shift East. Has the rise of the East, driven by China, unbalanced the global financial system, with the East attaining the clout to be culpable but not the maturity to be responsible? Sure, the rise of the East has helped stabilize the global economy and has lifted out of deepest poverty hundreds of millions of human beings: Yet many observers continue to yearn for an earlier world order involving US unipolarity and global hegemony, even if that world order is one where the interests of the entire world and those of the global hegemon do not always perfectly align. Scepticism abounds on sustainability: Have the last 30 years been an aberration, or has the East built the political and technological systems needed to maintain growth? Is the East now caught in a middle-income trap? Has the East only grown because the West provided the world a consumption-driven engine of growth? Does the East need to become more like the West? And, finally, regardless whether political legitimacy and economic sustainability obtain only with Western-style democracy, will continuing democratization of the world, paradoxically, be blocked by the democratic publics of the West? If China and the rest of the East fail, we will never know.

April 2013

Chris Pissarides appointed economic advisor to the President of Cyprus


Professor Christopher Pissarides has been appointed personal economic advisor to the newly-elected President of Cyprus, Nicos Anastasiades, who was sworn in on Thursday 28 February.

Nobel laureate Professor Pissarides will head a small team of economists who will advise the new government on all aspects of economic policy.

Chris said of his appointment, “Cyprus is going through very difficult times. The banking sector is nearly bankrupt because of exposure to Greece and government debt is soaring. The troika of the IMF, ECB and EU are requesting far reaching reforms and fiscal austerity. They are challenging times and being in the middle of it should be exciting.”

For further information, please visit the Reuters pages.

March 2013

Obituary: Frank Hahn, 1925-2013


We are very sad to report that Frank Hahn, who was a PhD student at LSE, and a professor in the Department of Economics at LSE from 1967 to 1972, died earlier this week at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, after a short illness.

Frank received his PhD from the LSE in 1951, having studied under Nicholas Kaldor and Lionel Robbins. After lecturing at the University of Birmingham from 1948-60, he spent six years in Cambridge, as a Lecturer at the Faculty of Economics and Politics, and a Fellow of Churchill College, before being offered an economics professorship at the LSE in 1967. He returned to Cambridge in 1972, where he spent the majority of his career as a Professor of Economics until he retired in 1992; he was also Professor Ordinario at the University of Siena from 1989.

Frank had a distinguished record of achievement in theoretical economics, carrying out pioneering work in market analysis, monetary economics, coordination failure, multiple equilibria, the microeconomic foundations of macroeconomics, equilibrium and optimality with missing markets, conjectural equilibria and much else besides, but in his preface to the 1992 collection of essays in Frank’s honour, “Economic Analysis of Markets and Games”, Douglas Gale recognized that one of the things that distinguished his work was that his motivation often came from practical concerns about unemployment, savings and investment, poverty, or the stability of markets.

As for his colleagues in the Economics Department at LSE, Nick Stern remembers Frank as “funny, outrageous and penetrating as well as great economist”, and has many fond memories of him.

“I remember at the IEA Jerusalem 1970 conference on growth, there was an intervention in French. An American, who shall be nameless, asked for a translation, and Frank suggested it was unnecessary: "I think you can assume we have all had a modicum of education". Dealing with an econometrician who thought the problem was one of estimation technique, he said "Tenth stage least squares will not help you if the model is senseless", and some advice he gave 40 years ago on understanding our subject has always stayed with me: "a model is just a sentence in an argument".”

In a similar vein, Frank Cowell recalls “a Churchill seminar given by Gérard Debreu on some particularly abstruse point in GE modelling, during which several in the audience (which contained other Nobel prize winners) were unconvinced of Debreu's main point. So Hahn helpfully clarified: "look Gérard it's 1973 and the UK economy is in equilibrium. You take away one of my bananas. What happens?"

Some final thoughts from Nick Stern: “He taught us so much and gave us so much fun. And he was a kind man even though he often did his best to conceal it. We will miss him very much but his lessons are with us. Our thoughts are with Dorothy.”

A funeral service for Frank Hahn will be held on Friday, 8th February, at 2.00pm, in Churchill College Chapel for family and close friends, followed by burial at the Arbory Trust Woodland site in Barton.  A Memorial Service will be arranged for a later date. Donations in his memory may be made to Churchill College c/o Co-operative Funeralcare, 34 James Street, Cambridge, CB1 1HX.

January 2013

Queen awards Regius professorship in economics to LSE


The government has announced that the LSE will be one of twelve universities to have the prestigious title of Regius Professor bestowed upon it by The Queen to mark the Diamond Jubilee, with the creation of a new Regius Professor in Economics.

A Regius Professorship is a rare privilege, with only two created in the past century; it is regarded as a reflection of the exceptionally high quality of teaching and research at an institution. All entries were assessed by a panel of experts on the merits of their application alone, but more weight was given to two primary criteria: the excellence of the Institution’s work in the proposed discipline and the recognition the discipline has gained, nationally and internationally, regardless of how long it has been studied. 

The Head of the Economics Department, Professor Michele Piccione, said the award was “a great honour that recognizes the outstanding contribution that LSE economics has made to the development of the discipline”. 

Further details of this exciting news will follow; in the meantime, the Cabinet Office’s press release can be found in their News page.

January 2013

New Centre for Macroeconomics launched at LSE

A new £5million Centre for Macroeconomics will bring together a group of world class experts to carry out pioneering research on the global economic crisis and help design policies to alleviate it.


Chaired by LSE’s Nobel Prize-winning economics professor, Christopher Pissarides, the new centre will encompass experts from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), University College London (UCL), Cambridge University, the Bank of England, the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR), and other leading global institutions.

Five major research programmes will address the key issues of unemployment, fiscal austerity, financial markets, shifts in the world economy, and the development of new methodologies. It is hoped that new methodologies and better communication with policy makers will enhance the research and will lead to better policy decisions. 

Professor Pissarides commented: "The new centre will be engaged in path-breaking research that gets to the heart of current debates and puzzles about the economy and the on-going recession. It became obvious soon after the start of the financial crisis that we did not have the tools to understand it, and were consequently less able to recommend policies to combat it. It also became obvious to us that globalisation and financial development had changed the nature of macroeconomic fluctuations, requiring many different skills within macroeconomics. The new centre is bringing together a diverse group of top experts in the field, who will work together to shed light on the very complicated set of problems facing policy makers today."

The centre is being funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the UK’s largest funder of research on economic and social issues.


The centre’s co-directors are Wouter Den Haan (pictured), Professor of Economics at LSE, and Morten O. Ravn, Professor of Economics at UCL.

Professor Ravn commented: “Over the past five years unemployment, fiscal austerity and instability in financial markets have posed serious challenges for the UK and much of the world economy. New research and better communication between economists is needed to address them. Our foremost aims are for the centre to provide first-rate research into macroeconomic aspects of these issues and to provide leadership and focus for UK macroeconomists and their interaction with policy makers. The centre will give policy makers access to cutting edge research and provide academics with stimulus from policy circles.”

Professor Den Haan commented: “We will not be shy in exploring new approaches to the questions currently facing us. We hope to develop economic models that are better suited to deal with large shocks like those we recently experienced and that can better capture the complexity of the real world.”

For more information please visit the LSE News and Media pages.

January 2013

The Department of Economics is moving!

From Monday 14 January 2013 the Department of Economics will be based in 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields.


The building is located on the south side of Lincoln's Inn Fields at the junction with Serle Street. It offers five floors of academic offices plus three lower floors of teaching and student activity areas. Its design style is Neo Jacobean and restoration works have been part of the refurbishment project. 


From the 14th January, the department will share the space with the Centre for the Analysis of Social Exclusion (CASE), the Centre for Economic Performance (CEP), the Centre for Macroeconomics, the International Growth Centre (IGC) and the Stuntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines (STICERD).

For further information please visit the  LSE Services intranet pages. The exact location can be found in the Maps and Directions section of the LSE website.  

Please note that the administration and academic offices in St Clements Building will be closed from 5pm on Wednesday 9th January.

The new offices will open at 9.30am on Monday 14th January in 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields.

January 2013

Professor Danny Quah receives Individual Performance Excellence Award


In December 2012, Professor Danny Quah, Kuwait Professor of Economics and International Development at LSE, was given the Hanban’s Confucius Institute Individual Performance Excellence Award of the Year, at a ceremony in Beijing.

The award recognises Professor Quah’s work on ‘promoting greater understanding on China’s place in the world, by insightfully analysing and effectively communicating to general audiences worldwide the effects of shifts in the global economy and of the rise of the east.’

Professor Quah said: ‘I consider myself just a technical economist who has had to work really hard to explain to people what I do. LSE has generously allowed me the space to try to do both. This award is a great honour for me but, more, an acknowledgement of LSE’s premier place in communicating across all the social sciences.’   

December 2012

Albert O. Hirschman 1915–2012

Albert Hirschman, a renowned social scientist, whose highly influential work in economics and politics in developing countries has had a profound impact on economic thought and practice, died on December 10. He was Professor Emeritus at the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton University and had studied at LSE between 1935 and 1936.

You can find a short biography at the Institute for Advance Study pages and an Obituary by Dennis Kavanagh at the Financial Times.

A personal note from Professor Tim Besley: 

“Albert became a dear friend during my time at Princeton. And I will never forget a dinner at which my wife Gill and Albert’s wife Sarah were also present where, despite his modesty, he talked about some of his exploits in the second world war. He was a true polymath, in many ways an intellectual and economist from a by-gone era. But his insights and work will be read well into the future because, above all, he was a thinker. To my regret, Albert and I never wrote the paper that we started working on together. But it was an honour to deliver the Albert Hirschman lecture at LACEA in Buenos Aries a few years ago. And one of my most treasured books is a signed copy of The Strategy of Economic Development. While we can claim only a small amount of credit in his formation – he spent most of his career in the U.S. – his work fitted perfectly with the ambitions of the LSE. His work epitomized excellent social science which is not too narrowly constrained by any disciplinary boundary.”

December 2012

Professor John Van Reenen elected Fellow of the Econometric Society


In November Professor John Van Reenen was elected Fellow of the Econometric Society.

The Econometric Society is an international society for the advancement of economic theory in its relation to statistics and mathematics. For further information, please visit the Econometric Society website.

December 2012

US Election Analysis No 3

Healthcare Reform: The US Policy Debate

The ability of the next US president to rein in spending on healthcare and improve the productivity of the healthcare system is largely going to determine the country’s fiscal future. That is one of the conclusions of the latest in a series of US Election Analyses, published today by the Centre for Economic Performance (CEP).

The aim of the CEP series is to provide non-technical, evidence-based and politically neutral introductions to the main economic issues facing the American people in the 2012 presidential election. In today’s report, Zack Cooper examines the evidence on the debate about healthcare reform, including the contentious legislation known as ‘Obamacare’ (To read the report please visit the CEP Publications pages).

Yesterday’s report by Nicholas Bloom and John Van Reenen highlighted the damaging impact of policy uncertainty on the US economic recovery while the first report by Ethan Ilzetzki covered the key issue of taxes, spending and public debt.

October 2012

US Election Analysis No 2

Economic Recovery and Policy Uncertainty

The second in a series of US Election Analyses from the Centre for Economic Performance (CEP) is published today.


In our second report, Nicholas Bloom, John Van Reenen (pictured) and colleagues assess the damaging impact of policy uncertainty on the US economic recovery.


The aim of the CEP series is to provide non-technical, evidence-based and politically neutral introductions to the main economic issues facing the American people in the 2012 presidential election. The first report covered the key issue of taxes, spending and public debt, a major point of disagreement between the two candidates, President Obama and Governor Romney. Healthcare reform and inequality will also be covered. 

October 2012

Centre for Economic Performance Launch US Election Analysis

Recession and Recovery: The US Policy Debate on Taxes, Spending and Public Debt

On the eve of the second US presidential debate, CEP is launching its first series of US Election Analyses.


In the first report, Ethan Ilzetzki covers the key issue of taxes, spending and public debt, a major point of disagreement between the two candidates, President Obama and Governor Romney.

The aim of the series is to provide non-technical, evidence-based and politically neutral introductions to the main economic issues facing the American people. We will also be covering healthcare, inequality and policy uncertainty.

As the economically largest and most powerful nation on the planet, what happens in the United States will have a profound influence on the rest of the world.

October 2012

Lecturership and Readership in Economics

Applications are invited from outstanding candidates for a Chair/Reader in Economics post and a Lecturer in Economics.

Please click on the following links for more information on the posts or visit the Jobs at LSE pages for more information.

Chair/Reader in Economics
How to Apply
Further Particulars 

Lecturer in Economics
How to Apply
Job Description
Person Specification
Further Particulars

October 2012

Economics Annual Review

The Economics Annual Review for 2011-12 is now available on the Economics website at the News section.


The first publication of its type produced by the Economics Department, the Review aims to keep our alumni, visitors and friends updated on the Department’s activities during the previous academic year.

It contains news of internal and external appointments, awards, student prizes, public events and selected publications, as well as staff and student profiles, and articles on the various initiatives with which the Department has been involved throughout the year.

The Review has been designed as an electronic publication, and can either be read online, or downloaded into Kindle, iBooks or any other PDF reader, but a number of hardcopies have also been produced. If you would like one of these, please contact the Departmental Office at

October 2012

Economics Orientation Events

Information on the Economics' Department's Orientation Events can be found in the pages for the Current Students or by visiting the Economics Orientation Timetable 2012 page.

October 2012

Kaushik Basu, former Economics PhD, named World Bank Chief Economist

Kaushik Basu who recently served as the economic adviser to the Indian government has been appointed as the Chief Economist of World Bank. Professor Basu, currently on leave from his position as Professor at Cornell University, holds a doctorate from the Economics Department at LSE. He has founded the Centre for Development Economics at the Delhi School of Economics and has written several books.

For more information, please visit the BBC News India page.

September 2012