John Van Reenen

Gordon Billard Professor of Management and Economics

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

JOHN VAN REENEN has been the Gordon Billard Professor of Management and Economics at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology (jointly in the MIT Economics Department and Sloan Management School) since 2016. Prior to this, he was Director of the Centre of Economic Performance and Professor at the London School of Economics. He has published over a hundred papers with a particular focus on firm performance and the causes and consequences of innovation. He was the 2009 winner of the Yrjö Jahnsson Award (the European equivalent of the Clark Medal). He is a fellow of the British Academy and the Econometric Society and in 2017, was awarded an OBE for “services to public policy and economics” by the Queen. He has been a senior policy advisor to 10 Downing Street, the UK Secretary of State for Health and the European Commission. He received his BA from the University of Cambridge, his MSc from the London School of Economics and his PhD from University College London.


Can Innovation Policy Restore Inclusive Prosperity in America?

Van Reenen argues the U.S. should pursue a robust innovation policy composed of tax credits, direct subsidies, and human capital investments, which have been shown to spur innovation and wage growth. He proposes combining these approaches into a 10-year $1 trillion Grand Innovation Challenge, which would reinvigorate R&D investment, promote American technological leadership, and advance policy goals of inclusive growth.