Ann Harrison, a renowned economist and member of the faculty at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, has been named the next dean of the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, the California school announced today. Harrison earned her undergraduate degree from Berkeley and served as a professor in Berkeley’s Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics from 2001 to 2011.
“Professor Harrison is an accomplished administrator as well as a world-class economist who has dedicated her career to creating forward-looking policies in development economics, international trade, and global labor markets,” Berkeley Chancellor Carol Christ said in a statement announcing the appointment. “It is a great honor to welcome her back to Berkeley to become the dean of Haas, and I have no doubt that she will be a wonderful leader the institution.”
Harrison, who will begin her term on January 1, 2019, said she is thrilled to return to Berkeley and looks forward to meeting Haas students and alumni and working with its distinguished faculty and staff, according to the release from the school.
Harrison worked as director of development policy at the World Bank before joining the Wharton faculty in 2012, co-managing a team of 300 researchers and staff. In her time with the World Bank, she reformed its research fund allocation process and supervised its most important publications, including the annual World Development Report. Setting a milestone in transparency for the institution, she convinced the World Bank’s president to release all historical records on project loans.
“Ann has a remarkable track record of pioneering research on trade and development, including influential studies of globalization’s effects on jobs and inequality,” Berkeley Economics Professor Maurice Obstfeld said in a statement. Obstfeld serves as chief economist at the International Monetary Fund and was a colleague of Harrison’s when she worked in Berkeley’s Agricultural and Resource Economics Department.
Princeton Professor Emeritus Sir Angus Deaton, who has known Harrison since her days as a graduate student at Princeton, praised her appointment. “Based on Ann’s experience at the World Bank, she will be an effective and much-loved manager,” said Deaton, who also holds the 2015 Nobel Laureate in Economic Sciences for his analysis of consumption, poverty, and welfare.
In addition to a PhD in economics from Princeton, Harrison also holds a diplôme d’études universitaires générales from the University of Paris and is a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and a member of the United Nations Committee for Development Policy. Author and editor of three books—including Globalization and Poverty and The Factory-Free Economy—Harrison is one of the most highly cited scholars globally on foreign investment and multinational firms.
Harrison replaces outgoing Dean Rich Lyons, who stepped down in June 2018 after serving as Haas dean for the past 11 years. He plans to return to teaching at Haas after completing a sabbatical. Haas Professor Laura Tyson, who has served as interim dean since Lyons’ departure, remain in that role until Harrison starts at the beginning of 2019.