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Stanford King Center on Global Development names new director

Economist Pascaline Dupas will take the helm in 2020.

Pascaline Dupas, a development economist whose scholarship focuses on policies aimed at reducing global poverty, has been named director of the Stanford King Center on Global Development.

She succeeds Grant Miller, who will be stepping down as director this summer.

Pascaline Dupas
Pascaline Dupas

Dupas, a professor of economics and a senior fellow at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (SIEPR) and at the Freeman Spogli Institute (FSI), will take the center’s helm on Sept. 1, 2020, after a quarter as faculty-in-residence for the Bing Overseas Program in Cape Town and a research sabbatical in the coming academic year. Jessica Leino, a research scholar and the center’s deputy director, will serve as interim director beginning Sept. 1, 2019.

“I am honored by the opportunity to serve Stanford’s vibrant global development research community,” Dupas said. “Thanks to Grant and Jessica’s visionary leadership, the center has grown into a powerhouse, enabling faculty and students to take on ambitious projects and to forge collaborations both within and outside the university. I am excited to build on this success and extraordinary foundation.”

Jessica Leino
Jessica Leino

Under Miller’s leadership since 2014, the center was forged as a joint venture between SIEPR and the Stanford Institute for Innovation in Developing Economies (Stanford Seed). He also worked to expand the center’s academic community by incorporating faculty and students from all of Stanford’s seven schools to concentrate strengths on addressing the challenges of global development.

“I am thrilled that Pascaline will be leading the Stanford King Center,” said Miller, who will continue his teaching and research on health economics. “Pascaline is an obvious choice for the position of director; her research as the senior development economist in Stanford’s economics department is exceptionally relevant to the center’s work. And I am very grateful for Jessica’s commitment to ensuring the center thrives by stepping into an interim role this year.”

Dupas, a 2019 recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship who was named the Best French Economist four years ago by Le Monde, focuses her research on identifying scalable programs and policies to improve the well-being of low income households in low income countries.

She has conducted experiments throughout Africa to determine how best to price, target, and distribute essential health products, measuring the most effective ways to curb malaria, teenage pregnancy, and HIV infection.

“Pascaline is an incredibly influential scholar who has done very important research on the determinants of health, education, and economic well-being in developing countries” said Mark Duggan, the Trione Director of SIEPR. “She’s also extremely dedicated to teaching and mentoring the next generation of researchers, and I know she’ll be sure that the King Center builds on its already strong foundation of student engagement. She’s an outstanding choice to steer the center that Grant has helped shape into Stanford’s home for policy-relevant work in global development.”

Dupas received her PhD in economics from the Paris School of Economics and joined the economics department at Dartmouth as an assistant professor in 2006. She was named an assistant professor at the University of California, Los Angeles, in 2008, and came to Stanford three years later as an assistant professor. She was awarded tenure as an associate professor in 2014, and became a full professor this year.

Dupas is an affiliate and board member of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (JPAL); a fellow at Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development (BREAD); a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); a research affiliate at the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); an affiliate of the Center for Effective Global Action (CEGA); and an associate research for Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA).

She is a past editor of the Journal of Development Economics, and currently sits on the editorial boards of several leading academic journals, including Econometrica; the Quarterly Journal of Economics; and American Economic Review: Insights.

"Pascaline Dupas is one of the most insightful and creative development economists in the world,” said Jesper Sørensen, director of Stanford Seed. “Pascaline has demonstrated a remarkable commitment to understanding and solving the multi-faceted, complex problems facing the world's poor. In this way, she perfectly embodies the mission of the Stanford King Center on Global Development. I am excited to see how she builds on Grant Miller's remarkable work in the creation of a truly multi-disciplinary, university-wide research community at Stanford."

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