International Leadership


             MIT-trained economists on Obama's national recovery team
             will work with MIT economists in leadership roles around the globe.
             Here are some of the guiding figures:  


Olivier Blanchard (PhD’77), appointed chief economist of the International Monetary Fund in September 2008, is a macroeconomist specializing in monetary policy, global imbalances, labor-market performance and speculative bubbles. Blanchard, who began teaching at MIT in 1982, succeeded Simon Johnson, Ronald A. Kurtz Professor of Entrepreneurship at the MIT Sloan School of Management at the IMF. MIT-trained economists also serve other nations as directors of central or government banks. 

Mario Draghi (PhD’76), Governor of the Bank of Italy and Chairman of the Economic and Financial Committee of the European Union, in seeing hope for global economic recovery in global economic cooperation. In a December 2008 lecture on combating the global financial crisis, Draghi endorsed international cooperation among fiscal authorities along lines proposed by the European Commission. “Great benefits could derive from adopting a similar approach at the global level,” he stated. Draghi was hopeful, he said, that the present momentum towards greater cooperation remains, when the economic situation has improved.

Stanley Fischer (PhD’69) is Governor of the Bank of Israel. A former Killian professor of economics and department head at MIT, Fischer has also held leadership positions at the IMF and the World Bank. “I expect that by the end of this year the US economy will start growing, mainly because of the new Obama administration’s programs about to get under way,” Fischer said in January. “I expect to see the first signs of growth before the end of this year.”

Jose De Gregorio (PhD’90), Governor of the Central Bank of Chile, has published widely on stabilization policies, foreign exchange regimes and economic growth. Gregorio succeeded Vittorio Corbo (Phd ’71), an authority on macroeconomics, international trade and economic development and economic tightness processes.

Athanasios Orphanides (PhD’90), Governor of the Central Bank of Cyprus, received SB degrees in economics and in mathematics from MIT, followed by his PhD in economics in 1990. Before taking on the central bank leadership, Orphanides worked in the US at the Federal Reserve.

Soundings, Spring 2009