Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Thursday, December 1, 2011

U-M expert to lead new European economic research program

U-M economist David Lam has been appointed director of a new European research program to improve understanding of economic growth and labor markets in low-income countries.

Funded by the United Kingdom Department for International Development and the German Institute for the Study of Labor, the program will allocate more than 10 million British pounds to fund peer-reviewed research projects based in institutions around the globe.

“This program is an ambitious investment in improving our understanding of how labor markets work in the world’s poorest countries,” says Lam, who is a professor of economics in LSA and a research professor in the Population Studies Center at the Institute for Social Research.

“The program will engage top economists in the world to study labor market imperfections, obstacles to productive employment, and gender gaps in employment opportunities. The results will lead to better policies that will improve the prospects for economic growth and poverty alleviation in these countries.”

As director, Lam will provide the intellectual leadership of the program, including identifying research gaps and specifying research areas for the calls for proposals. He will also lead the monitoring and evaluation of funded research projects, and the synthesizing of program results.

Lam is a renowned researcher in the field of economic demography and development. He is president of the Population Association of America and has previously worked as a consultant and adviser to the World Bank, the Population Division of the United Nations, the Inter-American Development Bank and the South Africa Office of the Presidency.

Established in 1998 in Bonn, Germany, the Institute for the Study of Labor is a private independent economic research institute focused on the analysis of global labor markets. The Department for International Development was created by the government of the United Kingdom in 1997 with a focus on fighting world poverty.