5 Prominent Economists Doing Important Work

The discipline of economics seeks to explain the dynamics of markets under capitalism. From its origins in eighteenth century political science, the field has broadened to encompass a wide range of methodologies, areas of study, and philosophical frameworks. In no particular order, this list highlights scholars and public policy makers currently garnering attention in the world of economics.

For #1, we have Mariana Mazzucato, a professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value at University College London. She is the winner of several international prizes, including the 2020 John von Neumann Award and the 2019 All European Academies Madame de Stael Prize for Cultural Values.

Mazzucato is the author of several books, including The Entrepreneurial State: Debunking Public vs. Private Sector Myths, The Value of Everything: Making and Taking in the Global Economy, and Mission Economy: A Moonshot Guide to Changing Capitalism.

Next up, at #2, we have Stephanie Kelton. She has worked in both academia and politics, having served as chief economist on the U.S. Senate Budget Committee in 2015 and as a senior adviser to Bernie Sanders' 2016 and 2020 presidential campaigns. She is a Senior Fellow at the Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis and a Professor at Stony Brook University.

Kelton's main focus in economics is Modern Monetary Theory. Her New York Times bestseller, The Deficit Myth: Modern Monetary Theory and the Birth of the People's Economy, describes ways Kelton believes we can responsibly use resources to maximize our potential as a society.

Coming in at #3, we have Clive L. Spash, who writes, researches, and teaches on public policy with an emphasis on economic and environmental interactions. His main interests are interdisciplinary research on human behavior, environmental values, and transforming the world political economy to a more socially and environmentally just system.

Spash is a Professor at the WU Vienna University of Economics and Business. He is the author of the book Greenhouse Economics: Value and Ethics, which explores human-induced climate change from the basic science through the impacts, uncertainty, and financial implications to ethics and public policy.

Up next, at #4, we have Maximo Torero, the chief economist of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in Rome, Italy. Before joining FAO in 2019, he served at the World Bank Group in Washington, D.C. as the executive director for Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay, Peru, and Uruguay.

Torero is a professor at the University of the Pacific, Peru. He has published dozens of peer-reviewed academic articles analyzing poverty, inequality, and behavioral economics in various journals, including the Quarterly Journal of Economics. He has a Ph.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Last but not least, at #5, we have William R. White, a Senior Fellow at the C.D. Howe Institute in Toronto, Canada. White has published many articles on topics related to monetary and financial stability as well as the process of international cooperation in these areas. He appears at public speaking engagements regularly.

White began his professional career at the Bank of England, where he was an economist from 1969 to 1972. He received his Ph.D from the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom, where he was supported by a Commonwealth Scholarship.