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Who are the most influential people in world?

Identify leaders in your chosen discipline, research top professors in your area of study, and search for schools based on the luminaries who most inspire you!

Note: These rankings dynamically change as our AI learns new things and new publications and citations are made. Academics are actively researching and publishing new insights, leaving our measure of more recent influence subject to continual adjustments. While we delay real-time changes for quality assurance reasons, be not surprised as you see our rankings change over time.

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Gender designations here are based off data sourced from Wikidata.

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List of the most influential people in Economics, for the years 2010 – 2020

Paul Krugman
# 1
Paul Krugman

1953 - Present (67 years)

#185 person's overall influence

Paul Krugman is one of the most highly respected and well-known economists in the world. He is a professor emeritus of the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University, a distinguished professor of the Graduate Center Economics Ph.D program and scholar at the Luxembourg Income Study Center, both at City University of New York.

Joseph E. Stiglitz
# 2
Joseph E. Stiglitz

1943 - Present (77 years)

#384 person's overall influence

Joseph Eugene Stiglitz is a Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences winner, public policy analyst, and professor at Columbia University. He earned his B.A. in Amherst College and his Ph.D in Economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Stiglitz is another of the most highly esteemed economists in the world, having been awarded a Nobel Prize in 2001, for his work analyzing markets with asymmetric information.

Thomas Piketty
# 3
Thomas Piketty

1971 - Present (49 years)

#1325 person's overall influence

Thomas Piketty is Professor at École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) and at the Paris School of Economics. He earned his Ph.D from the London School of Economics – at the age of 22, even winning an award from the French Economics Association for his thesis.

Esther Duflo
# 4
Esther Duflo

1972 - Present (48 years)

#2928 person's overall influence

Esther Duflo is Professor of Poverty Alleviation and Development Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She earned a B.A. from École normale supérieure in Paris, an M.A.S. from the School of Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences, and a Ph.D from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Abhijit Banerjee
# 5
Abhijit Banerjee

1961 - Present (59 years)

#3310 person's overall influence

Abhijit Banerjee is the Ford Foundation International Professor of Economics for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He earned his B.Sc from the University of Calcutta, his M.A. from Jawaharlal Nehru University, and his Ph.D from Harvard University. He is a co-founder of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab, with his wife Esther Duflo (also appearing on this list). Together, they are only the sixth married couple to be awarded a Nobel Prize, which they shared with collaborator Michael Kremer in 2019.

Martin Wolf
# 6
Martin Wolf

1946 - Present (74 years)

#3219 person's overall influence

Martin Harry Wolf, CBE is a British journalist who focuses on economics. He is the associate editor and chief economics commentator at the Financial Times.

Amartya Sen
# 7
Amartya Sen

1933 - Present (87 years)

#360 person's overall influence

Amartya Sen is the Thomas W. Lamont University Professor and Professor of Economics and Philosophy at Harvard University. He earned a B.A. in economics from the University of Calcutta and a B.A., M.A., and Ph.D from Trinity College in Cambridge.

Jeffrey Sachs
# 8
Jeffrey Sachs

1954 - Present (66 years)

#1248 person's overall influence

Jeffrey Sachs is the Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs and professor of health policy and management for Columbia University’s School of Public Health. He completed his studies at Harvard University, earning a B.A., an M.A., and a Ph.D in economics.

Robert Solow
# 9
Robert Solow

1924 - Present (96 years)

#771 person's overall influence

Robert Solow is Emeritus Institute Professor of Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Solow earned his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D from Harvard University. In the middle of his studies, from 1941-1945, Solow served in the U.S. Army, deployed overseas during World War II.

Ha-Joon Chang
# 10
Ha-Joon Chang

1963 - Present (57 years)

#5818 person's overall influence

Ha-Joon Chang is a reader in Political Economy of Development at the University of Cambridge. He earned his undergraduate degree from Seoul National University, and an M.Phil and Ph.D from the University of Cambridge. He is well known for his work in institutionalist political economy, which is a study of economics that situates the economy in context with sociopolitical factors.

Daniel Kahneman
# 11
Daniel Kahneman

1934 - Present (86 years)

#726 person's overall influence

Daniel Kahneman is an Israeli-American psychologist and economist who is currently the Eugene Higgins Emeritus Professor of Psychology and Professor of Psychology and Public Affairs Emeritus for the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. He earned a B.S. in psychology from Hebrew University and an M.A. and Ph.D from the University of California, Berkeley. Kahneman is world-famous for his groundbreaking work on the psychology of judgement and decision making. His studies, along with Amos Tversky, developed into prospect theory which examines behavioral economics and finance and how huma

Richard Thaler
# 12
Richard Thaler

1945 - Present (75 years)

#2099 person's overall influence

Richard Thaler is the Charles R. Walgreen Distinguished Service Professor of Behavioral Science and Economics at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He earned a B.A. from Case Western Reserve University, and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Rochester.

Michael Kremer
# 13
Michael Kremer

1964 - Present (56 years)

#7957 person's overall influence

Michael Kremer is a University Professor in Economics and the College and the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago, and Director of the Development Innovation Lab. Kremer is also founder and president of WorldTeach, co-founder of Precision Agriculture for Development, a research affiliate for Innovations for Poverty Action, and a renowned developmental economist. He earned an A.B. in social studies and a Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University.

George Akerlof
# 14
George Akerlof

1940 - Present (80 years)

#1441 person's overall influence

George Akerlof is a university professor at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy and an emeritus professor at the University of California, Berkeley. He earned a B.A. degree from Yale University and a Ph.D from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

George Soros
# 15
George Soros

1930 - Present (90 years)

#357 person's overall influence

George Soros, Hon is a Hungarian–American billionaire investor and philanthropist. , he had a net worth of $8.3 billion, having donated more than $32 billion to the Open Society Foundations.

Greg Mankiw
# 16
Greg Mankiw

1958 - Present (62 years)

#3831 person's overall influence

Greg Mankiw is the Robert M. Beren Professor of Economics at Harvard University and a well-known macroeconomist of the New Keynesian school. He earned a B.A. in economics from Princeton University and a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He studied law briefly at Harvard Law School before returning to become an assistant professor of economics at Harvard University.

Cass Sunstein
# 17
Cass Sunstein

1954 - Present (66 years)

#1219 person's overall influence

Cass Sunstein is Harvard Law School’s Robert Walmsley University Professor. He earned his B.A. and J.D. from Harvard University and is a scholar of constitutional law and behavioral economics.

Emmanuel Saez
# 18
Emmanuel Saez

1972 - Present (48 years)

#6263 person's overall influence

Emmanuel Saez is a professor of economics at the University of California at Berkeley. Saez studied mathematics and economics at the École normale supérieure and earned a Ph.D in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Gabriel Zucman
# 19
Gabriel Zucman

1986 - Present (34 years)

#9604 person's overall influence

Gabriel Zucman is an internationally recognized expert in corporate tax havens and Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of California at Berkeley. He earned his B.Sc from École normale supérieure de Cachan and his M.Sc and Ph.D from the Paris School of Economics.

Herman Daly
# 20
Herman Daly

1938 - Present (82 years)

#872 person's overall influence

Herman Daly is emeritus professor of the University of Maryland’s School of Public Policy. He earned his Ph.D from Vanderbilt University. Daly served as Senior Economist for the World Bank’s Environment Department. With collaborator John B. Cobb, he designed the Index of Sustainable Economic Welfare, which they recommended as a better metric of economic health or growth than Gross Domestic Product (GDP), which fails to recognize key markers of economic health.

John Quiggin
# 21
John Quiggin

1956 - Present (64 years)

#3638 person's overall influence

John Quiggin is an Australian economist, a Professor at the University of Queensland. He was formerly an Australian Research Council Laureate Fellow and Federation Fellow and a Member of the Board of the Climate Change Authority of the Australian Government.

James Heckman
# 22
James Heckman

1944 - Present (76 years)

#4385 person's overall influence

James Heckman is the Henry Schultz Professor in Economics at the University of Chicago, director of the Center for the Economics of Human Development, co-director of Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Global Working Group, and professor at the Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies. He earned a B.A. in mathematics from Colorado College and a Ph.D in economics from Princeton University.

Daron Acemoğlu
# 23
Daron Acemoğlu

1967 - Present (53 years)

#6080 person's overall influence

Daron Acemoğlu is the Elizabeth and James Killian Professor of Economics for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which also awarded him their highest honor, the title of Institute Professor, in 2019. He earned his B.A. from the University of York and his Ph.D from the London School of Economics. Acemoğlu’s research speciality is political economy. After earning his Ph.D at the age of 25, he went on to win the John Bates Clark Medal, that recognizes new economists. A prolific writer, he has published hundreds of works in his quest to understand the causes of poverty. In this work, he ha

Angus Deaton
# 24
Angus Deaton

1945 - Present (75 years)

#4735 person's overall influence

Angus Deaton is a Senior Scholar and the Dwight D. Eisenhower Professor of Economics and International Affairs Emeritus at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and the Economics Department at Princeton University. He earned a B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge.

Steve Keen
# 25
Steve Keen

1953 - Present (67 years)

#5654 person's overall influence

Steve Keen is Honorary Professor and Distinguished Research Fellow for the Institute for Strategy, Resilience and Security at University College London. Keen was formerly the Head of the School of Economics, History, and Politics and Professor of Economics at Kingston University. He earned a B.A. and a Bachelor of Law from the University of Sydney and a Diploma of Education from Sydney Teachers College. He then earned a Master of Commerce in economics and economic history and a Ph.D at the University of New South Wales.

Seamus Coffey
# 26
Seamus Coffey

1970 - Present (50 years)

#20858 person's overall influence

Seamus Coffey is an Irish economist and media contributor with a focus on the performance of the Irish economy and Irish macroeconomic and fiscal policy. He is a lecturer at University College Cork. He was Chair of the Irish Fiscal Advisory Council from 2016 to 2020.

James A. Robinson
# 27
James A. Robinson

1960 - Present (60 years)

#8494 person's overall influence

James A. Robinson is the Reverent Dr. Richard L. Pearson Professor of Global Conflict Studies and University Professor for the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago, Institute Director of the Pearson Institute for the Study and Resolution of Global Conflicts, an economist and political scientist. He earned a B.A. from the London School of Economics, an M.A. from the University of Warwick, and a Ph.D. from Yale University.

Alberto Alesina
# 28
Alberto Alesina

1957 - 2020 (63 years)

#7505 person's overall influence

Alberto Francesco Alesina was an Italian political economist. According to Lawrence Summers, he was one of the leading political economists of his generation, publishing much-cited books and articles in major economics and political science journals.

Mariana Mazzucato
# 29
Mariana Mazzucato

1968 - Present (52 years)

#17445 person's overall influence

Mariana Mazzucato is founder and director of the University College of London’s Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, as well as professor of economics of innovation and public value. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in history and international relations from Tufts University, and a Masters and Ph.D in economics from the New School for Social Research.

Kenneth Rogoff
# 30
Kenneth Rogoff

1953 - Present (67 years)

#8642 person's overall influence

Kenneth Saul Rogoff is an American economist and chess Grandmaster. He is the Thomas D. Cabot Professor of Public Policy and Professor of Economics at Harvard University.

Dani Rodrik
# 31
Dani Rodrik

1957 - Present (63 years)

#11548 person's overall influence

Dani Rodrik is the Ford Foundation Professor of International Political Economy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He earned a B.A. from Harvard University and an MPA and Ph.D from Princeton University.

Eric Maskin
# 32
Eric Maskin

1950 - Present (70 years)

#2371 person's overall influence

Eric Stark Maskin is an American economist and 2007 Nobel laureate recognized with Leonid Hurwicz and Roger Myerson "for having laid the foundations of mechanism design theory". He is currently Adams University Professor and Professor of Economics and Mathematics at Harvard University.

Carmen Reinhart
# 33
Carmen Reinhart

1955 - Present (65 years)

#7785 person's overall influence

Carmen M. Reinhart is a Cuban-born American economist and the Minos A. Zombanakis Professor of the International Financial System at Harvard Kennedy School. Previously, she was the Dennis Weatherstone Senior Fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. and Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for International Economics at the University of Maryland. She is a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, a Research Fellow at the Centre for Economic Policy Research, Founding Contributor of VoxEU, and a member of Council on Foreign Relations. She

# 34
James R. Hines Jr.

1958 - Present (62 years)

#14336 person's overall influence

James R. Hines Jr. is an American economist and a founder of academic research into corporate-focused tax havens, and the effect of U.S. corporate tax policy on the behaviors of U.S. multinationals. His papers were some of the first to analyse profit shifting, and to establish quantitative features of tax havens. Hines showed that being a tax haven could be a prosperous strategy for a jurisdiction, and controversially, that tax havens can promote economic growth. Hines showed that use of tax havens by U.S. multinationals had maximized long-term U.S. exchequer tax receipts, at the expense of

Kate Raworth
# 35
Kate Raworth

1970 - Present (50 years)

#22463 person's overall influence

Kate Raworth is an English economist working for the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge. She is known for her work on the 'doughnut economics', which she understands as an economic model that balances between essential human needs and planetary boundaries.

Samuel Bowles
# 36
Samuel Bowles

1936 - Present (84 years)

#10092 person's overall influence

Samuel Bowles is Professor of Economics at the University of Siena in Italy, the Arthur Spiegel Research Professor and Director of the Behavioral Sciences Program at the Santa Fe Institute, and a Professor Emeritus at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He graduated from Yale University with a B.A., before earning his Ph.D in economics from Harvard University.

Andrei Shleifer
# 37
Andrei Shleifer

1961 - Present (59 years)

#3840 person's overall influence

Andrei Shleifer is a Russian-American economist and Professor of Economics at Harvard University, where he has taught since 1991. Shleifer was awarded the biennial John Bates Clark Medal in 1999 for his seminal works in three fields: corporate finance , the economics of financial markets , and the economics of transition.

Nancy Folbre
# 38
Nancy Folbre

1952 - Present (68 years)

#3551 person's overall influence

Nancy Folbre is professor economics at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a B.A. in philosophy and an M.A. in Latin American studies. She earned her Ph.D in economics at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. After graduating, she completed a post-doctoral research fellowship at Yale University’s Economic Growth Center.

# 39
Diane Elson

1946 - Present (74 years)

#6493 person's overall influence

Diane Rosemary Elson is a British economist, sociologist and gender and development social scientist. She is Professor Emerita of sociology at the University of Essex and a former Professor of development studies at the University of Manchester.

Arthur Laffer
# 40
Arthur Laffer

1940 - Present (80 years)

#3223 person's overall influence

Arthur Betz Laffer is an American economist and author who first gained prominence during the Reagan administration as a member of Reagan's Economic Policy Advisory Board . Laffer is best known for the Laffer curve, an illustration of the concept that there exists some tax rate between 0% and 100% that will result in maximum tax revenue for government. In certain circumstances, this would allow governments to cut taxes, and simultaneously increase revenue and economic growth.

Eugene Fama
# 41
Eugene Fama

1939 - Present (81 years)

#2029 person's overall influence

Eugene Francis "Gene" Fama is an American economist, best known for his empirical work on portfolio theory, asset pricing, and the efficient-market hypothesis.

# 42
Wendy Carlin

1957 - Present (63 years)

#38759 person's overall influence

Wendy Joan Carlin, is a Professor of Economics at University College London, expert advisor to the Office for Budget Responsibility, and research fellow at the Centre for Economic Policy Research.

Tim Jackson
# 43
Tim Jackson

1957 - Present (63 years)

#12992 person's overall influence

Tim Jackson is a British ecological economist and professor of sustainable development at the University of Surrey. He is the director of the Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity , a multi-disciplinary, international research consortium which aims to understand the economic, social and political dimensions of sustainable prosperity. Tim Jackson is the author of Prosperity Without Growth and Material Concerns . In 2016, he received the Hillary Laureate for exceptional mid-career Leadership.

Jean Tirole
# 44
Jean Tirole

1953 - Present (67 years)

#2773 person's overall influence

Jean Tirole is a French professor of economics. He focuses on industrial organization, game theory, banking and finance, and economics and psychology. In 2014 he was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for his analysis of market power and regulation.

Diane Coyle
# 45
Diane Coyle

1961 - Present (59 years)

#23124 person's overall influence

Diane Coyle, is an economist and a former advisor to the UK Treasury. She was vice-chairman of the BBC Trust, the governing body of the British Broadcasting Corporation, and was a member of the UK Competition Commission from 2001 until 2019. Since March 2018, she has been the Bennett Professor of Public Policy at the University of Cambridge, co-directing the Bennett Institute.

Alvin Eliot Roth
# 46
Alvin Eliot Roth

1951 - Present (69 years)

#5477 person's overall influence

Alvin Elliot Roth is an American academic. He is the Craig and Susan McCaw professor of economics at Stanford University and the Gund professor of economics and business administration emeritus at Harvard University. He was President of the American Economics Association in 2017.

Margunn Bjørnholt
# 47
Margunn Bjørnholt

1958 - Present (62 years)

#13627 person's overall influence

Margunn Bjørnholt is a Norwegian sociologist and economist. She is a Research Professor at the Norwegian Centre for Violence and Traumatic Stress Studies .

Alan B. Krueger
# 48
Alan B. Krueger

1960 - 2019 (59 years)

#6417 person's overall influence

Alan Bennett Krueger was an American economist who was the James Madison Professor of Political Economy at Princeton University and Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research. He served as Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy, nominated by President Barack Obama, from May 2009 to October 2010, when he returned to Princeton. He was nominated in 2011 by Obama as chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, and served in that office from November 2011 to August 2013. He was among the 50 highest ranked economists in the world according to Research ...

Markus Brunnermeier
# 49
Markus Brunnermeier

1969 - Present (51 years)

#30175 person's overall influence

Markus Konrad Brunnermeier is an economist, who is the Edwards S. Sanford Professor of Economics at Princeton University. He is a faculty member of Princeton's Department of Economics and director of the Bendheim Center for Finance. His research focuses on international financial markets and the macro economy with special emphasis on bubbles, liquidity, financial crises and monetary policy. He promoted the concepts of liquidity spirals, CoVaR as co-risk measure, the paradox of prudence, and the I Theory of Money. He is or was a member of several advisory groups, including to the IMF, the Fede

Alan Blinder
# 50
Alan Blinder

1945 - Present (75 years)

#4960 person's overall influence

Alan Stuart Blinder