Shang-Jin Wei

Professor, Columbia University & former Chief Economist, Asian Development Bank

Dr. Shang-Jin Wei is N.T. Wang Professor of Chinese Business and Economy and Professor of Finance and Economics at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business and School of International and Public Affairs.

During 2014-2016, Dr. Wei served as Chief Economist of Asian Development Bank and Director General of its Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department. He was ADB’s chief spokesperson on economic trends and economic development in Asia, advised ADB’s President on economic development issues, led the bank’s analytical support for regional cooperation fora including ASEAN+3 (China, Japan, and Korea) and APEC, growth strategy diagnostics for developing member countries, as well as research on macroeconomic, financial, labor market, and globalization issues.

Prior to his Columbia appointment in 2007, he was Assistant Director and Chief of Trade and Investment Division at the International Monetary Fund. He was the IMF’s Chief of Mission to Myanmar (Burma) in 2004. He previously held the positions of Associate Professor of Public Policy at Harvard University, the New Century Chair in Trade and International Economics at the Brookings Institution, and Advisor at the World Bank.

He has been a consultant to numerous government organizations including the U.S. Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, United Nations Economic Commission on Europe, and United Nations Development Program, the Asian Development Bank, and to private companies such as PricewaterhouseCoopers. He holds a PhD in economics and M.S. in finance from the University of California, Berkeley.

Dr. Wei is a noted scholar on international finance, trade, macroeconomics, and China. He is a recipient of the Sun Yefang Prize for Distinguished Contributions to Economics (for the invention of the Competitive Saving Motive published in Journal of Political Economy), the Zhang Peifang Prize for Contributions to Economics of Development (for pioneering work on measurement of global value chains published in American Economic Review), and the Gregory Chow Award for Best Research Paper; some of his research was supported by a grant from the U.S. National Science Foundation.

Dr. Wei’s research has been published in top academic journals including American Economic Review, Journal of Political Economy, Quarterly Journal of Economics, Journal of Finance, Review of Financial Studies, Journal of International Economics, and Journal of Development Economics, and reported in popular media including Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, Economist, Business Week, Times, US News and World Report, Chicago Tribune, South China Morning Post, and other international news media.

from Columbia Business school

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'Sex and the Chinese Economy'

‘A rise in China’s male-female ratio may have contributed to between one-third and one-half of the increase in its trade surplus with other countries.’ ‘The sex imbalance thus likely underpins an important source of tension between China and the US. Yet bilateral engagement has paid scant attention to this linkage.’
5/27/2021

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'How Will the Digital Renminbi Change China?'

‘China's new digital renminbi by itself will not help the currency to challenge the US dollar’s global dominance.’ ‘Its true significance instead lies in its potential to shift the competitive balance of power between the country’s technology giants and traditional banks.’
5/3/2021

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'Why Biden Should Ditch Trump’s China Tariffs'

‘President Joe Biden has to decide whether to rescind his predecessor’s China tariffs.’
3/11/2021

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Why China's Economy is Growing Faster than Others

‘First is China's relatively aggressive and decisive measures on the COVID public health crisis itself that managed to get the pandemic under control much faster than the other large economies.’ ‘The relative success in controlling the pandemic translates into how much people are willing to go back to their normal lives, to their jobs, and the like.’
8/27/2020