The Development Economics Program
The Development Economics Program, the youngest NBER program, was formed in 2012 to bring together scholars working on fundamental questions related to economic development and the behavior of individuals, families, firms, and institutions in developing countries. Program researchers undertake a wide array of studies to improve understanding of economic growth and productivity, poverty, inequality, and population well-being across the globe.
Of about 125 program members, nearly three-quarters also are affiliated with other NBER programs; Development Economics is the primary affiliation for about half the program members. This reflects both the breadth of development economics within the economics discipline and the fact that many of the central questions in development are also major questions in other areas of economics. One of the key benefits of the Development Economics Program is the unparalleled opportunity to integrate cutting-edge research across fields within economics and to develop productive cross-field collaborations that yield new insights into some of the most important issues of our day. The program has benefited from recent increases in the number of exceptionally talented young economists working in the field. About half of program affiliates received their PhD in the last 10 years.
Program initiatives are supported by an active advisory committee with a broad and changing membership. Current and past advisory committee members include Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo, Andrew Foster, Penny Goldberg, Chiang-Tai Hsieh, Eliana La Ferrara, Dilip Mookherjee, Benjamin Olken, and Christopher Udry. The program has collaborated with the Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development (BREAD), which was well-established when the program was launched. While NBER affiliates must have primary academic appointments in North America, BREAD includes researchers with academic and non-academic appointments globally. Joint meetings therefore provide a valuable breadth of perspectives. Every other year, the program and BREAD have held well-attended, productive joint meetings