Bio for Claudia Goldin

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Claudia Goldin is the Henry Lee Professor of Economics at Harvard University and director of the NBER’s Development of the American Economy program. Goldin is an economic historian and a labor economist. Her research has covered a wide array of topics, such as slavery, emancipation, the post-bellum south, women in the economy, the economic impact of war, immigration, New Deal policies, inequality, technological change, and education. Most of her research interprets the present through the lens of the past and explores the origins of current issues of concern. In the past several years her work has concerned the rise of mass education in the United States and its impact on economic growth and wage inequality. More recently she has focused her attention on college women’s achievement of career and family.

She is the author and editor of several books, among them Understanding the Gender Gap: An Economic History of American Women (Oxford 1990), The Regulated Economy: A Historical Approach to Political Economy (with G. Libecap; University of Chicago Press 1994), The Defining Moment: The Great Depression and the American Economy in the Twentieth Century (with M. Bordo and E. White; University of Chicago Press 1998), and Corruption and Reform: Lesson’s from America’s Economic History (with E. Glaeser; Chicago 2006). Her most recent book is The Race between Education and Technology (with L. Katz; The Belknap Press, 2008), winner of the 2008 R.R. Hawkins Award for the most outstanding scholarly work in all disciplines of the arts and sciences.

Goldin is best known for her historical work on women in the U.S. economy. Her most recent papers in that area have concerned the history of women’s quest for career and family, coeducation in higher education, the impact of the “pill” on women’s career and marriage decisions, women’s surnames after marriage as a social indicator, and the reasons why women are now the majority of undergraduates. She has recently embarked on a wide ranging project on the family and career transitions of male and female graduates of selective universities from the late 1960s to the present.

Goldin is the current president of the American Economic Association. In 2007 Goldin was elected a member of the National Academy of Sciences and was the Gilman Fellow of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Society of Labor Economists (SOLE), the Econometric Society, and the Cliometric Society. In 2009 SOLE awarded Goldin the Mincer Prize for life-time contributions to the field of labor economics. Goldin completed her term as the President of the Economic History Association in 2000. In 1991 she was elected Vice President of the American Economic Association. From 1984 to 1988 she was editor of the Journal of Economic History and is currently an associate editor of the Quarterly Journal of Economics and a member of various editorial boards. She is the recipient of various teaching awards. Goldin received her B.A. from Cornell University and her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago.

For information on Claudia Goldin see " The Economist as Detective," a brief autobiographical essay from M. Szenberg, ed., Passion and Craft: Economists at Work. The University of Michigan Press (1998)

For more information on Claudia Goldin's research, see the interview in The Region, vol. 18, no. 3 (September 2004), pp. 14-23, a quarterly publication of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Interview with Claudia Goldin.

Also see, "Exploring the Present Through the Past," an interview with Claudia Goldin by Brian Snowden, in World Economics, vol. 8, no. 4 (Oct-Dec. 2007), pp. 61-124.