- The Chief Economist of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) resigns from the post
- Gira Gopinath, the first very female Chief Economist of IMF held the position for 3 year
- Gopitnath will return to Harvard and assume her last position of a Professor
Gita Gopinath, an economist of Indian origin, will not return to her earlier job and assume the post of a professor at the Economics department at the Harvard University. Gopinath has resigned from the position of the Chief Economist at the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Gopinath was the first female chief economist of IMF and the only second Indian to hold such a prestigious position after Raghuram Rajan who held the position from 2003 to 2006 before he joined the Finance Ministry as the Chief Economic Adviser and later assumed the position of the Governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
Managing Director of IMF, Kristalina Georgieva said, “Gita’s contribution to the fund and our membership has been truly remarkable—quite simply, her impact on the IMF’s work has been tremendous,” in a statement announcing Gopinath’s exit from the IMF.
Georgieva added, “She made history as the first female Chief economist of the fund and we benefited immensely from her sharp intellect and deep knowledge of international finance and macroeconomics as we navigate through the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression”.
As part of her many significant initiatives at the IMF, Gopinath co-authored the “Pandemic Paper” on how to end the pandemic induced by COVID-19 which has set globally endorsed targets for vaccinating the world and also helped set up a Climate Change team inside the IMF to analyze, among other things, optimal climate mitigation policies.
In a statement, IMF said, “This work led to the creation of the Multilateral Task Force made up of the leadership of the IMF, World Bank, WTO, and WHO to help end the pandemic and the establishment of a working group with vaccine manufacturers to identify trade barriers, supply bottlenecks, and accelerate delivery of vaccines to low- and lower-middle income countries”.
A US national and overseas citizen of India, Gopinath’s research has been published in several top economics journals.
Before she was appointed the Chief Economist at the IMF, she was the John Zwaanstra Professor of International Studies and Economics, in the economics department of Harvard. She was a visiting scholar at both the IMF as well as the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, member of the economic advisory panel of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Economic Adviser to the Chief Minister of Kerala state in India, and member of the Eminent Persons Advisory Group on G-20 Matters for India’s Ministry of Finance.
Before she had joined Harvard University as a faculty in 2005, she was an assistant professor of economics at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business.
Gopinath is also a member of the Group of Thirty. Group of Thirty, also known as G30, is an international body of financiers as well as academics who collectively aim to deepen understanding of economic and financial issues and examine the consequences of decisions made in the public and private sectors.
IMF has said that the search for Gopinath’s successor will begin shortly.