Technology Empowering U.S. Diplomacy and Development

Plenary Panel: "The Impact of Geo-Economics on Foreign Policy and in the Future" - Speaker Bios

In a globalized, interconnected world flooded with ever increasing amounts of data, economic, political, and security issues are no longer clearly delineated. Issues that, in the past, appeared to be largely economic, today can easily have a major impact on key foreign policy interests. How these geo-economic issues are analyzed, whether they are viewed through a foreign policy lens, and how they are used to inform diplomats and development experts is now a critical component in the formulation and implementation of foreign policy. This panel will explore the challenges to incorporating geo-economic issues and analyses into the foreign policy arena and discuss trends for the future.

Laurel Adams (Moderator) - U.S. Department of State

Laurel Adams joined the Office of the Chief Economist in November 2012. Previously, she was the Foreign Service Institute’s International Economist and in that capacity she designed and delivered a broad range of applied economics courses. Prior to joining the Department of State, Laurel worked in the private sector for four years and taught for 12 years at the graduate and undergraduate levels. In addition to her U.S. experience, Laurel has worked with industry and consulting in London; taught in Kiev, Kingston and London; supervised student consulting projects for UK-based firms; and led student study trips to South Africa, China, Brazil and Ghana. She has published in both the academic and non-academic spheres. Her previous employers include the Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University and the University of Iowa. Laurel holds a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Pennsylvania.

Shantayanan Devarajan - World Bank Africa Region

Shantayanan Devarajan is the Chief Economist of the World Bank’s Africa Region. Since joining the World Bank in 1991, he has been a Principal Economist and Research Manager for Public Economics in the Development Research Group, and the Chief Economist of the Human Development Network, and of the South Asia Region.  He was the director of the World Development Report 2004, Making Services Work for Poor People. Before 1991, he was on the faculty of Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.

The author or co-author of over 100 publications, Mr. Devarajan’s research covers public economics, trade policy, natural resources and the environment, and general equilibrium modeling of developing countries. Born in Sri Lanka, Mr. Devarajan received his B.A. in mathematics from Princeton University and his Ph.D. in economics from the University of California, Berkeley.

Mr. Devarajan also hosts the World Bank's Africa region blog, Africa Can... End Poverty.

David Gordon - Eurasia Group

David F. Gordon is Eurasia Group's head of research and director of global macro analysis. He is a member of the firm's executive committee, and is based in Washington, DC.

Before joining Eurasia Group, David spent more than ten years working at the highest levels of US foreign and national security policy processes. From June 2007 to January 2009, David served as the director of policy planning under Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. He played a leading role in developing policy ideas for Rice on issues ranging from Afghanistan and Pakistan to US engagement in East Asia to the multilateral response to the international financial crisis. He also led the department's strategic policy dialogues with more than 20 countries around the globe

Prior to his work with the US State Department, David served in a top management role at the National Intelligence Council (NIC) from 2004 to 2007, during which time he led the NIC's integration into the new Office of the Director of National Intelligence and its reemergence as the preeminent analytic center in the US government through enhancing analytic quality and integrity in the aftermath of the 2003 Iraq National Intelligence Estimate. He provided analytic leadership for the NIC's groundbreaking reports, Global Trends 2015 and Global Trends 2020.

David is a graduate of Bowdoin College and undertook graduate studies in both political science and economics at the University of Michigan, where he received his PhD in 1981.

John Taylor - Stanford University
John B. Taylor is the Mary and Robert Raymond Professor of Economics at Stanford University and the George P. Shultz Senior Fellow in Economics at Stanford’s Hoover Institution. He is also the director of Stanford's Introductory Economics Center. Taylor is known for his economic research on the foundations of monetary theory and policy, which has been applied by central banks and financial market analysts around the world. He also has an active interest in public policy and teaching. He served as senior economist on the President’s Council of Economic Advisers from 1976 to 1977, as a member of the Council from 1989 to 1991, as a member of the Congressional Budget Office’s Panel of Economic Advisers from 1995 to 2001, and as Under Secretary of Treasury for International Affairs from 2001 to 2005. In addition he also served as a senior economic adviser on four presidential campaigns.  Among many awards, Taylor was awarded the Hoagland Prize and the Rhodes Prizes for excellence in undergraduate teaching. He received the Bradley Prize for his economic research and policy achievements, the Adam Smith Award from the National Association for Business Economics, the Alexander Hamilton Award and the Treasury Distinguished Service Award for his policy contributions at the U.S. Treasury, and the Medal of the Republic of Uruguay for his work in resolving the 2002 financial crisis. Taylor received a B.A. in economics summa cum laude from Princeton and a Ph.D. in economics from Stanford.  He won the 2012 Hayek Prize for his latest book, First Principles: Five Keys to Restoring America’s Prosperity. Taylor's homepage is and his blog can be found at

Angel Ubide - The Peterson Institute for International Economics

Ángel Ubide, senior fellow, is an expert on central banking, European affairs, finance and macroeconomic policy, and is the director of global economics for the D. E. Shaw Group, a global investment and technology development firm. Dr. Ubide has been deeply involved in the global economic policy debate: as a member of the Steering Committee of the Euro50 Group; as board member of the Reinventing Bretton Woods Committee; as a founding member (2002–12) of the European Central Bank's Shadow Governing Council; and as associate fellow at the Center for European Policy Studies, where he coauthored several editions of the annual report on the European economy. He has written on international macroeconomics, monetary policy, European policy issues, banking, and exchange rates. Dr. Ubide has been a frequent contributor to the Spanish media, currently as an economic columnist at El Pais, the leading Spanish newspaper, and has also been published or cited in leading global newspapers, including the EconomistFinancial Times, Wall Street Journal,and Newsweek. His recent work has focused on the dynamics of the global financial crisis, the evolution of global imbalances, and the reform of the international financial architecture.

Dr. Ubide worked for more than a decade at Tudor Investment Corporation, a multistrategy hedge fund management firm. Before that, Dr. Ubide served as an economist at the International Monetary Fund and as an associate in McKinsey & Company. Dr. Ubide received a degree in economics and business administration from the University of Zaragoza and his MA and PhD in economics from the European University Institute in Florence (Italy).

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