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UiO economists selected as world leading in political economics

June 25th, 2015: Researchers at the Department of Economics will receive a million grant for excellent research quality. The funds are earmarked recruitment of international top researchers.

Urban setting of rich and poor in an Asian city

Understanding global inequality is a key research issue. Illustration photo: Shreyans Bhansali, flickr.

Why has China had such a speedy growth? How will the Greeks’ reluctance to pay taxes affect their economy? And what does it take to ensure public support for key climate measures?

These are some of the imperative political and economic issues that the four professors Kalle Moene, Kjetil Storesletten, Bård Harstad, and Raquel Fernández will explore with the UiO grant to world leading research communities. 

–  The funding will make it possible to attract more international top researchers in addition to those who are already here. It represents a great step ahead for us, says Kalle Moene. 

Moene´s research on the equilibrium of equality has had an international impact. Photo: Gupta/UiO

Internationally recognized research

Storesletten
Kjetil Storesletten Photo: UiO
Fernandez
Raquel Fernandez Photo: NYU

The allocated funds are earmarked research with a focal attention on the global reality of economics and politics.

Kalle Moene’s research on the equilibrium of equality has had an international impact. So has Kjetil Storesletten’s approach on how inequality influences and is influenced by macroeconomics and the welfare state.

Bård Harstad’s research on the relationship between political institutions at local and central level is also internationally recognized. Equally Rachel Fernández has done ground-breaking research on how cultural relationships sustain gender roles and gender differences, which again affect the socio-economic development. 

Strong research community

Harstad
Bård Harstad Photo: UiO

In close collaboration with his colleagues Moene has created a strong research community around political economics at ESOP – Centre for the study of equality, social organization, and performance, located at the Department of Economics. The community’s approach to political economics has attracted attention beyond academia. 

The researchers have not only expanded the traditional economic perspective. They have also undertaken interdisciplinary collaboration with anthropologists, philosophers, political scientists, psychologists, sociologists, and historians. As a method for intellectual growth they have tried to cultivate an open dialogue with a high level of tolerance.    

– Without good questions it is of course difficult to make good research, Moene underlines. To identify research problems of high quality it is particularly important to have a good mixture of research interests within the group.

– To put together groups of researchers with diverse attitudes and different knee-jerk reactions has been underestimated in social research. It is of vital importance that both gender are represented, Moene argues.  

He stresses that aiming at clear research problems with competitive approaches can lead to ground-breaking research within this field.   

By Gro Lien Garbo. Translation by Stina Petersen
Published June 25, 2015 8:05 AM - Last modified Aug. 17, 2017 8:32 AM