March 24, 2010 AT 9:00 pm

Esther Duflo, economist – 24 hours of Lady Ada Lovelace day #ald10

Pt 2735

Each hour we are featuring a woman we admire who is currently doing amazing work right in the tech/maker/art/science space. Woman of the hour, Esther Duflo. She appears in the video series above.

Esther Duflo is a French economist, currently the Abdul Latif Jameel Professor of Poverty Alleviation and Development Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She is also co-founder of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab, and in 2009 was named a MacArthur Foundation Fellow, otherwise known as a “genius” grant. She first studied at the French École normale supérieure, where she graduated in history and economics. In 1999, she was hired as an assistant professor by the MIT department of economics, joining the department immediately after she completed her Ph.D., also at MIT. She was promoted to associate professor (with tenure) in 2002, at the age of 29, making her among the youngest faculty at the Institute to be awarded tenure.

Her major research focus is on Development economics, with an emphasis on health, education, gender and politics, and provision of credit. In 2005, Le Monde awarded her the Best Young French Economist prize. She was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2009.

Esther Duflo serves as founding editor of the American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, and co-editor of the Review of Economics and Statistics and the Journal of Development Economics, and is a member of the editorial committee of the Annual Review of Economics. She is currently a co-director of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab at MIT, and writes a monthly column for Libération, a French daily. The US magazine Foreign Policy named her as one of the top 100 public intellectuals in the world in May 2008. The Economist lists Duflo as one of the top 8 young economists in the world.

You can visit her site here.


About today:

Ada Lovelace Day is an international day of blogging (videologging, podcasting, comic drawing etc.!) to draw attention to the achievements of women in technology and science. Women’s contributions often go unacknowledged, their innovations seldom mentioned, their faces rarely recognized. We want you to tell the world about these unsung heroines, whatever they do. It doesn’t matter how new or old your blog is, what gender you are, what language you blog in, or what you normally blog about – everyone is invited.

Who was Ada? Ada Lovelace Augusta Ada King, Countess of Lovelace (10 December 1815 – 27 November 1852) was one of the world’s first computer programmers, and one of the first people to see computers as more than just a machine for doing sums. She wrote programs for Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine, a general-purpose computing machine, despite the fact that it was never built. She also wrote the very first description of a computer and of software.


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