Robert J. Barro

Senior Fellow
Awards and Honors:
American Academy of Arts and Sciences
Econometric Society (elected fellow)
Biography: 

Robert J. Barro is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, the Paul M. Warburg Professor of Economics at Harvard University, and a research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research.

Barro's expertise is in the areas of macroeconomics, economic growth, and monetary theory. Current research focuses on two very different topics: the interplay between religion and political economy and the impact of rare disasters on asset markets and macroeconomic activity.

He has written extensively on macroeconomics and economic growth. Noteworthy research includes empirical determinants of economic growth, economic effects of public debt and budget deficits, and the formation of monetary policy.

Recent books include Macroeconomics: A Modern Approach, Economic Growth (2nd edition McGraw Hill, 2008) written with Xavier Sala-i-Martin, Nothing Is Sacred: Economic Ideas for the New Millennium, Determinants of Economic Growth (2002), and Getting It Right: Markets and Choices in a Free Society (1996).

Barro is coeditor of Harvard’s Quarterly Journal of Economics and was recently president of the Western Economic Association and vice president of the American Economic Association.

He was a viewpoint columnist for Business Week from 1998 to 2006 and a contributing editor of the Wall Street Journal from 1991 to 1998.

Before his appointments at Harvard University and the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, Barro was a professor of economics at the University of Chicago and at the University of Rochester.

Barro received a PhD in economics from Harvard University and a BS in physics from Caltech.

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Recent Commentary

Currency Unions

Currency Unions

by Robert J. Barrovia Books by Hoover Fellows
Monday, January 1, 2001

A look at performance of other monetary systems and the pitfalls of flexable exchange rates.

Flying Down to Rio

by Robert J. Barrovia Hoover Digest
Saturday, October 30, 1999

Recently Hoover fellow Robert J. Barro traveled to Brazil to assess the country’s economic policies. He was not impressed.

My Luncheon with Bono

by Robert J. Barrovia Hoover Digest
Saturday, October 30, 1999

It’s not every day that a professor of economics gets invited to dine with a rock star. Hoover fellow Robert J. Barro on meeting a superstar who proved pleasant, well meaning—and surprisingly well versed in economics.

From Seattle to Santiago, Let the Dollar Reign

by Robert J. Barrovia Hoover Digest
Friday, July 30, 1999

Hoover fellow Robert J. Barro endorses a plan that could bring much-needed economic stability to Central and South America. ¡Viva greenbacks!

How the IMF Starts the Fires It’s Supposed to Put Out

by Robert J. Barrovia Hoover Digest
Friday, July 30, 1999

How could the IMF best help the global economy? By declaring itself insolvent and going out of business. By Hoover fellow Robert J. Barro.

What Might Save Russia Yet

by Robert J. Barrovia Hoover Digest
Friday, April 30, 1999

Can Russia still dig itself out of its economic morass? Hoover fellow Robert J. Barro thinks it can—if it follows his advice.

Why the Antitrust Cops Should Lay Off High Tech

by Robert J. Barrovia Hoover Digest
Saturday, January 30, 1999

Federal intervention in the computer industry is unwarranted and counterproductive. How not to mince words, by Hoover fellow Robert J. Barro.

Don’t Tinker with Social Security. Reinvent It

by Robert J. Barrovia Hoover Digest
Friday, October 30, 1998

How to reform Social Security? Simple. Privatize it. By Hoover fellow Robert J. Barro.

Milton and Rose D. Friedman, 1937

Tribute on the Quad

by Milton Friedman, Robert J. Barro, Gary S. Becker, Rose D. Friedman, Walter B. Wristonvia Hoover Digest
Friday, October 30, 1998

Milton and Rose D. Friedman recently published their memoirs, Two Lucky People. Herewith tributes paid to the Friedmans at the dinner the Hoover Institution hosted in their honor on the Stanford Quad.

A Budget Only the Beltway Could Love

by Robert J. Barrovia Hoover Digest
Friday, January 30, 1998

Despite the hurrahs among Republicans and Democrats alike after last summer's budget agreement, Hoover fellow Robert J. Barro sees little cause for celebration. A critique of a big deal.

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