Xavier Sala i Martin: A Leading Economist in the Field of Economic Growth
Zatrun Published at May 23, 2023

Xavier Sala i Martin is a highly respected economist and professor of economics at Columbia University. He was born in Cabrera de Mar, Catalonia and earned his degree in economics from the Autonomous University of Barcelona in 1985.

Later, he completed his PhD in economics from Harvard University in 1990. He is considered one of the leading economists in the field of economic growth and has taught at renowned universities like Yale, Harvard, and the Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona. If you want to learn more about him, you can check out the subheadings in this article on

Xavier Sala i Martin

Who is Xavier Sala i Martin?

Sala i Martin’s contributions to the field of economics are impressive, and he is consistently ranked among the most-cited economists in the world for works produced in the 1990s. His work includes the topics of economic growth, development in Africa, monetary economics, social security, health and economics, convergence, and classical liberal thinking, with his book Liberal Economics for Non-Economists and Non-Liberals. He has also constructed an estimate of the world distribution of income, which he has used to estimate poverty rates and measures of inequality. The conclusions of this study offered a new perspective, as he claimed that both poverty rates and individual income inequalities were falling, contrary to the beliefs of the United Nations and the World Bank.

Xavier Sala i Martin is the author of the economic growth textbook Apuntes de Crecimiento Economico and the co-author (with Robert Barro) of the textbook Economic Growth. He is also the co-author of the Global Competitiveness Index, which has been used since 2004 for the Global Competitiveness Report, an index published by the World Economic Forum that ranks 142 countries by their level of economic competitiveness.

In addition to his academic work, Xavier Sala i Martin is actively involved in various other activities. He founded Umbele: A Future for Africa, a nonprofit organization that promotes economic development in Africa. He is also a columnist for the Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia, and he often collaborates with Catalan media to support the independence of Catalonia from Spain. He gives conferences around Catalonia in the name of the pro-independence association that he and other university teachers created for that purpose, (Col·lectiu Wilson).

A Renowned Economist with Varied Interests and Contributions

Xavier Sala i Martin’s contributions to the field of economics have not gone unnoticed. He has been recognized with a Distinguished Teacher in Graduate Economics award three times at Columbia and Yale, with the 2004 King Juan Carlos I Prize (a biannual prize given to the best economist in Spain and Latin America), and the 2006 Lenfest Prize awarded to the best teacher at Columbia University. In 2017, he was listed by UK-based company Richtopia at number 14 in the list of 100 Most Influential Economists.

Despite his impressive achievements in the field of economics, Xavier Sala i Martin is also known for his involvement in the world of sports. He was a board member at FC Barcelona and treasurer of the club between 2004 and 2010. He was even the president of the club during the electoral process of 2006.

Xavier Sala i Martin’s contributions to the field of economics have had a significant impact on the study of economic growth. His work has challenged traditional beliefs and offered new perspectives on poverty rates and measures of inequality. In addition to his academic contributions, he has also been actively involved in promoting economic development in Africa and supporting the independence of Catalonia from Spain.

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