Oxford Martin School opens major economics institute


On 12th April the Oxford Martin School announced the opening of a new economics research institute aimed at preventing future global financial meltdowns and tackling Eurozone debt crises. The Martin School has collaborated with the Institute for New Economics Thinking (INET) to create INET@Oxford.

In the wake of the 2008 financial crisis and the on-going Euro crisis, the new interdisciplinary research centre aims to promote innovative thinking on economics and to educate the next generation of economists, business leaders and politicians.

Professor Ian Goldin, Director of the Oxford Martin School, told Cherwell, “This new centre will focus on addressing some of the greatest economic challenges we face ranging from avoiding future financial crises to ensuring that the positive potential of globalization is realized and its risks mitigated.”

The centre will have a five-year budget of over US$25 million and will receive core funding from INET, a non-profit foundation started by business magnate George Soros. Speaking at INET’s annual conference in Berlin, Mr Soros stated that he was providing so much funding for the research because there was an urgent need for fresh thinking in economics, “to mitigate many global challenges, for the creation of sustainable jobs and employment and the wide-ranging challenges of development.”

Over 40 leading academics are to be involved in the centre. A spokesperson told Cherwell, “INET@Oxford will seek to leverage thinking from across academic disciplines in its approach to ecnomics. In addition to economists the centre will work with physicists, biologists, psychologists, antrophologists and others across the physical and social sciences.”

The institute will launch with four main research programmes: economic modelling, complexity economics, global economic development and ethics and economics. In the future, it will expand to research a wider range of topics.

Eric Beinhocker, a former partner at management consultancy firm McKinsey & Company and the new Executive Director of INET@Oxford said, “In addition to working with a strong network of academics, INET@Oxford will collaborate closely with policymakers in finance ministries, central banks, development agencies, multilateral institutions, and other institutions where key economic policy decisions are being made.”

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Both parties are excited about the collaboration. When asked for his views on the matter, Professor Goldin stated “The establishment of INET@Oxford is an exciting development which aims to yield major advances in key areas of economic theory and policy.”

INET’s Executive Director, Dr Robert Johnson, added: “The Oxford Martin School’s dedication to innovative interdisciplinary research makes it an ideal home for this major INET centre.”

The Vice-Chancellor of the University, Professor Andrew Hamilton, released a statement, saying, “The Oxford Martin School provides a fertile interdisciplinary home for this new centre which will see the acceleration of research with great potential for positive real‐world impact.

‘INET@Oxford will greatly enhance our ability to nurture new research and engage with leaders on critical global issues”.