This week, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde formally appointed Gita Gopinath as Economic Counsellor and Director of the IMF’s Research Department. Ms. Gopinath will now succeed Maurice (Maury) Obstfeld, who this July announced his retirement from the IMF.
“Gita is one of the world’s outstanding economists, with impeccable academic credentials, a proven track record of intellectual leadership, and extensive international experience,” Ms. Lagarde said in a statement. “All this makes her exceptionally well-placed to lead our Research Department at this important juncture. I am delighted to name such a talented figure as our Chief Economist.”
Gopinath is co-editor of the American Economic Review and co-director of the International Finance and Macroeconomics Program at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). She is also the co-editor of the current Handbook of International Economics with Former IMF Economic Counsellor Kenneth Rogoff. She has authored some 40 research articles on exchange rates, trade and investment, international financial crises, monetary policy, debt, and emerging market crises.
Born and raised in India, Gopinath is a U.S. citizen and an Overseas Citizen of India. She earned her Ph.D. in economics from Princeton University in 2001. She joined the University of Chicago in 2001 as an Assistant Professor before moving to Harvard in 2005. She became a tenured Professor there in 2010.
“Her intellectual acumen will help the IMF better guide its member countries, especially developing countries, to deal with the complex economic and social challenges wrought by globalization,” Eswar Prasad, senior fellow at the Brooking Institution told the Financial Times.