Penny Goldberg
Chief Economist of the World Bank
In office
26 November 2018 – 1 March 2020
PresidentJim Yong Kim
Kristalina Georgieva (Acting)
David Malpass
Preceded byShanta Devarajan (Acting)
Succeeded byAart Kraay (Acting)
Personal details
Pinelopi Koujianou

1963 (age 60–61)
Athens, Greece
EducationUniversity of Freiburg (Diplom)
Stanford University (MA, PhD)
AwardsBodossaki Prize in Social Sciences (2003)
Guggenheim Fellow (2010–2011)
American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2014)
National Academy of Sciences (2019)
Academic career
InstitutionPrinceton University
Columbia University
Yale University
FieldInternational economics
Information at IDEAS / RePEc
WebsiteOfficial website

Pinelopi "Penny" Koujianou Goldberg (born 1963)[1] is a Greek-American economist who served as chief economist of the World Bank from 2018 until 2020. She holds the named chair of Elihu Professor of Economics at Yale University. She is also a non-resident senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics.

Early life and education

Goldberg was born in Athens, Greece.[1] She received a Diplom in economics from the University of Freiburg in 1986 and a PhD from Stanford University in 1992.


Goldberg teaches at Yale University, where she is the Elihu professor of economics. At Yale, she was initially one of only three female economics professors to have been granted tenure.[2] She previously held faculty positions at Columbia University (1999–2001), Princeton University (1992–99 and 2007–10), and Yale (2001–07 and 2010–present).[3]

In 2011, Goldberg became the first woman appointed as editor-in-chief of the American Economic Review, one of the most prestigious journals in economics.[4] She was the editor-in-chief from 2011 to 2016 and co-editor from 2010–2016 and in 2017.

Goldberg was appointed by Jim Yong Kim as the chief economist of the World Bank on April 27, 2018, and joined in November 2018.[5] During her time in office, she was on public service leave from Yale University. In February 2020, she announced that she would resign effective March 1, 2020, to return to her position at Yale. She was succeeded by Aart Kraay, director of research in the Development Research Group, as interim chief economist until a permanent successor could be found.[6][7] She did not state her reasons for resigning, but The Economist speculated that displeasure at senior World Bank officials, who are alleged to have suppressed research finding that some World Bank foreign aid is captured by local elites, may have played a role.[8]

Goldberg is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences,[9] a fellow of American Academy of Arts and Sciences,[10] fellow of the Econometric Society and its president for 2021,[11] a faculty research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, a member of the board of BREAD (Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development),[12] and a research affiliate of the International Growth Centre of the London School of Economics. She is a recipient of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation fellowship[13] and the Bodossaki Prize in social sciences.[14]


Goldberg's dozens of published works focus on applied microeconomics, international trade, and industrial organization. More recently, she has studied the impact of trade liberalization on growth and the income distribution,[15] the effects of intellectual property rights enforcement in developing countries, and the determinants of incomplete exchange-rate pass-through.[3]

In joint work with Nina Pavcnik, Amit Khandelwal, Petia Topalova, and Jan De Loecker, Goldberg has studied the effects of the 1990s trade liberalization in India on domestic production and the variety of products available in the domestic Indian market[16] and on the costs faced by Indian producers.[17]

In a paper published in the Quarterly Journal of Economics in 2020, jointly written with economists Pablo K. Fajgelbaum, Patrick J. Kennedy, and Amit K. Khandelwal, Goldberg analyzed the effects of the 2018 Trump tariffs and China–United States trade war on the US economy and estimated losses of $68.8 billion to consumers and producers due to higher prices. The total effect, which also accounts for the benefits of higher prices to US producers and government revenue from tariffs, was estimated to be $7.8 billion. The authors further analyzed the distribution of losses across sectors and counties, finding that workers in tradeable sectors in heavily Republican counties were especially worse off.[18][19]

Her research on measuring human capital, joint with Simeon Djankov, Noam Angrist and Harry Patrinos, underlies the World Bank's Human Capital Index.[20]

More recently, Goldberg has worked to write about the lack of importance of waiving vaccine patents.[21] She argues against the current push by the WHO and by many other global organizations by stating that production capacity is not the main constraint that individuals face in attaining vaccination, thus discrediting the argument for major companies waiving vaccine patents. Goldberg makes the point that greater funding for ordering vaccination and sending surpluses of vaccine production in high-income countries is the main solution to better distribution for the vaccine.

Goldberg has been published in a variety of journals and commended for her research, notably The Quarterly Journal of Economics, American Economic Review, the Handbook of Commercial Policy, and The Annual Review of Economics. [22]

Selected works


  1. ^ a b "Ελληνίδα οικονομολόγος στο τιμόνι της Παγκόσμιας Τράπεζας - Μια πορεία που ξεκινά από την Αθήνα και περνά από το Yale". (in Greek). April 28, 2018. Retrieved April 18, 2020.
  2. ^ Delphine Strauss (April 27, 2018), Yale professor appointed chief economist at World Bank Financial Times.
  3. ^ a b "Curriculum Vita of Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg". Retrieved November 8, 2016.
  4. ^ Zoe Gorman (September 28, 2010). "In economics, cracking the glass ceiling". Yale Daily News. Retrieved November 8, 2016.
  5. ^ "World Bank Group President Appoints Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg as Chief Economist". Retrieved April 27, 2018.
  6. ^ "World Bank Chief Economist Penny Goldberg Resigns". Xinhua. February 5, 2020. Archived from the original on February 6, 2020.
  7. ^ Martin, Eric (February 5, 2020). "World Bank Chief Economist Penny Goldberg to Leave in March". Bloomberg News. Retrieved February 7, 2020.
  8. ^ "The World Bank loses another chief economist". The Economist. February 13, 2020. Retrieved February 20, 2020.
  9. ^ "Pinelopi Goldberg". Retrieved February 22, 2020.
  10. ^ "Steven T. Berry and Pinelopi K. Goldberg elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences". Retrieved November 22, 2018.
  11. ^ "The Society Announces its 2020 Officers and Council Election Results". Econometric Society. September 17, 2020. Retrieved September 23, 2020.
  12. ^ "BREAD:People".
  13. ^ "Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg". Guggenheim Foundation. Retrieved February 7, 2020.
  14. ^ "Bodossaki Foundation awards distinguished Greek researchers". July 17, 2003. Retrieved November 8, 2016.
  15. ^ Delphine Strauss (April 27, 2018), Yale professor appointed chief economist at World Bank Financial Times.
  16. ^ Goldberg et al., 2010a, 2010b
  17. ^ Goldberg et al., 2016
  18. ^ Fajgelbaum, Pablo D.; Goldberg, Pinelopi K.; Kennedy, Patrick J.; Khandelwal, Amit K. (2019). "The Return to Protectionism". National Bureau of Economic Research. doi:10.3386/w25638. S2CID 159219050. Retrieved May 8, 2019. ((cite journal)): Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  19. ^ Donnan, Shaun (March 4, 2019). "Evidence Grows That Trump's Trade Wars Are Hitting U.S. Economy". Bloomberg News. Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  20. ^ Angrist, Noam; Djankov, Simeon; Goldberg, Pinelopi K.; Patrinos, Harry A. (2019). "Measuring Human Capital". World Bank Policy Research Working Papers. hdl:10986/31280. ((cite journal)): Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  21. ^ Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou (May 13, 2021). "Forget the Vaccine Patent Waiver". Project Syndicate. Retrieved November 24, 2021.
  22. ^ "Selected Publications | Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg".
Diplomatic posts Preceded byShanta DevarajanActing Chief Economist of the World Bank 2018–2020 Succeeded byAart KraayActing