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January 29, 2015

World Bank Senior Vice President on Future of Development

World Bank Senior Vice President on Future of Development

Kaushik Basu, chief economist and senior vice president of the World Bank, delivered the first of two lectures on February 10 as part of a semester-long conversation on “The Global Future of Development” through Georgetown’s Global Futures Initiative.

In the first lecture, Basu outlined the challenge of economic development in today’s world, drawing on long-term trends and contemporary risks, and included an explanation of the World Bank Group’s goals to end poverty and promote shared prosperity.

The talk was webcast live at

“Our partnership with the World Bank Group is generating a sustained dialogue around the practical and ethical dimensions of global development,” said Thomas Banchoff, vice president for global engagement.

Georgetown’s Global Futures Initiative is designed to address critical issues facing our world by inviting members of our community over the next two years to engage with global leaders in the public sector, business, and civil society, and to take up innovative teaching and research agendas.

A Global Futures blog, featuring insights from 40 students, faculty, and practitioners around the world, helped make the spring 2015 conversation about “The Global Future of Development” truly global, Banchoff says.

Basu is the second World Bank chief economist who comes from a developing country and the first from India.

Prior to his position with the World Bank, he served as chief economic advisor to the Government of India. On leave from Cornell University, where he is a professor of economics and the C. Marks Professor of International Studies, Basu has a diverse and distinguished career. He is a Fellow of the Econometric Society and received one of India’s highest honors, the Padma Bhushan award, as well as the National Mahalanobis Memorial award for economics contributions.

Basu’s contributions to the field span development economics, welfare economics, industrial organization, and game theory. He has taught at the Delhi School of Economics, Harvard, Princeton, and MIT. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from the London School of Economics.

World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim spoke at a Georgetown on global pandemics on January 27 for the inaugural Global Futures talk, and he will give a second lecture on March 18 on climate change.

Basu’s second lecture at Georgetown, on "Development Economics; The Big Open Questions," took place on April 7.