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Duggan reappointed as SIEPR director

Duggan’s second five-year term, announced by Stanford’s Vice Provost and Dean of Research Kathryn Moler, begins Sept. 1, 2020.

Mark Duggan, the Trione Director of the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (SIEPR), has been reappointed to lead the institute for another five years.

Mark Duggan's new five-year term as SIEPR's director will begin on Sept. 1, 2020.

Duggan’s second term, announced Monday by Stanford’s Vice Provost and Dean of Research Kathryn Moler, begins Sept. 1, 2020.

“I’m very excited that Mark will continue at the helm of SIEPR,” Moler said. “Economic policy is the key to so many facets of society, and Mark’s vision, leadership and ability to generate innovative partnerships will benefit SIEPR and raise the bar for the entire Stanford community.”

Duggan, who is also a SIEPR senior fellow and the Wayne and Jodi Cooperman Professor of Economics in the School of Humanities and Sciences, said strengthening the institute’s role in  bridging academia with the policy world will remain a high priority during his second term, along with increasing SIEPR’s engagement with undergraduate and graduate students.

Despite the logistical and financial challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic, Duggan says that SIEPR is committed to its mission of supporting policy-relevant research, training the next generation of economic policy scholars and convening leaders in government, business and academia. 

“We are living through a crisis that demonstrates how important it is to have well-designed economic policy,” Duggan said. “I’m proud to work with our deep bench of scholars who are creating the knowledge that helps shape those policies and are investigating what’s working and what isn’t. And I’m incredibly grateful to all of the staff at SIEPR, who are integral to supporting our mission.”

Duggan plans to build on the early success of SIEPR’s Policy Fellows and Media Fellows program – both launched in the past year – to deepen the connections between Stanford researchers and the people making and influencing economic policy. 

The programs bring current and former government officials along with working journalists to campus. While in residence, the fellows meet with faculty, students and SIEPR supporters to share their knowledge and broaden their understanding of economics. SIEPR also hosts several academic visitors each year, including postdoctoral scholars and junior faculty from other campuses.

“We want to draw these influencers and up-and-coming experts deeply into our orbit, make them very familiar with our researchers and their scholarship, and have them return to government agencies and newsrooms with a better understanding of what makes for good economic policy,” Duggan said.

Another key to ensuring good economic policy is teaching and mentoring students who represent the next generation of business leaders, government officials and scholars. 

Since  his appointment as SIEPR’s director in September 2015, Duggan has taught “Econ 1” — Stanford’s introductory economics course — and substantially increased the number of undergraduate research assistants working with senior and faculty fellows. SIEPR also supported dozens of graduate students this year; and in 2017, Duggan instituted the SIEPR/Economics Predoctoral Research Fellowship program. The full-time, one- to two-year post-baccalaureate program will support 29 predocs next year.

The number of Stanford faculty affiliated with SIEPR has also more than doubled during Duggan’s leadership. There are currently 93 senior and faculty fellows and 15 senior fellows emeriti on the institute’s roster. While most are economists, a growing number of faculty affiliates are scholars from other disciplines and draw from each of Stanford’s seven schools. 

“There’s a growing recognition of how economics plays such an important role in understanding policymaking,” Duggan said, pointing to SIEPR’s recent collaborations with the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence and the Stanford School of Medicine. 

And he and Moler expect SIEPR scholars to play a strong role in a new school being designed to focus on climate and sustainability.

“There are so many opportunities for collaboration within and outside of Stanford that we’ll be able to explore and facilitate in the years ahead,” Duggan said.