Stefan Dercon

J-PAL Affiliated Professor

Professor of Economic Policy

University of Oxford

Stefan Dercon is a Professor of Economic Policy at the Blavatnik School of Government and the Economics Department of the University of Oxford, and a Fellow of Jesus College. He is also Director of the Centre for the Study of African Economies. His research interests concern what keeps some people and countries poor: the failures of markets, governments and politics, mainly in Africa, and how to achieve change. Current research work focuses on the psychological challenges of poverty, the political economy of development, the challenges of industrialization in Africa, the challenges and opportunities of new technologies, and how to finance responses to natural disasters and protracted humanitarian crises.

Between 2011 and 2017, Stefan was Chief Economist of the UK's Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (formerly DFID), the government department in charge with the UK’s aid policy and spending. In this position, he provided strategic advice and was responsible for ensuring the use of evidence in decision-making.

Stefan has served on J-PAL's Jobs and Opportunity Initiative (JOI) Review Board.

He studied economics and philosophy at the University of Leuven (Belgium) and holds an MPhil and DPhil in economics from the University of Oxford.