Jeffrey Sachs 101: The Economist Who Advises the UN
Zatrun Published at March 08, 2024

Jeffrey Sachs is an economist who was born in Michigan, USA in 1954 and has done significant scientific work. He has advised various countries on economic reforms and developed models aiming to eradicate poverty globally. He is a world-renowned expert on economic development and fighting poverty.

Throughout his life, Sachs has collaborated with organisations such as the United Nations and the World Bank to contribute to the development of emerging countries. His work is still debated today in the field of economics. If you want to learn more about him, you can check out the subheadings in this article.

Jeffrey Sachs

Who is Jeffrey Sachs?

Jeffrey Sachs received his undergraduate, master’s and doctoral education in economics at Harvard University. He then continued his academic career at Harvard. He climbed the ranks quickly and became a professor in 1983. He held this position until 2002. In 2002, he was appointed as a professor of health policy and management at Columbia University and also became the director of the Earth Institute, expanding his contributions to academia.

Jeffrey Sachs specialised in international finance and inflation and consulted for many organisations. Some of them are the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. Sachs also advised governments in Latin America, Eastern Europe and Asia on reducing hyperinflation rates and achieved great success.

In the 1990s, Sachs contributed to the preparation of a series of influential economic works. He also edited many important economic books such as “The Transition in Eastern Europe” and “The Rule of Law and Economic Reform in Russia”, as well as his study on the Russian economy after the Cold War, “Russia and the Market Economy”.

Jeffrey Sachs

Sachs’ Ideas and United Nations

Jeffrey Sachs worked on the UN Millennium Project as a special adviser to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan from 2002 to 2006. The official report, published on January 17, 2005, established global goals to reduce poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy, environmental problems, and discrimination against women.

In his book “The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time”, published in 2005, Sachs created a roadmap to eliminate global poverty by 2025. His solution challenged the traditional top-down development policies that required aid to underdeveloped countries to be donated and planned by Western governments and civil society organisations. Instead, Sachs argued that recipient countries should present their investment targets to donors.

Sachs, who is one of the most famous economists of today, faced intense criticism from those who were wary of a globalised economy, especially because of the privatisation-focused shock therapy he proposed in 1991 to revive the Russian economy. Russia, which implemented this suggestion, had to leave the control to oligarchs who acted outside the laws.

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