Welcome Kjetil Storesletten

Kjetil Storesletten, Department of Economics, University of Minnesota
Kjetil Storesletten, Department of Economics

This fall the Department of Economics welcomed Kjetil Storesletten to the faculty as the inaugural Richard and Beverly Fink Professor in Economics. Storesletten comes most recently from the University of Oslo.

“Kjetil is a tremendous addition to the department,” said Tom Holmes, chair of the department of Economics. “He is an internationally recognized macroeconomist who brings a wealth of experience as a professor, researcher, and policy advisor.”

While it may seem like quite the leap to move from Oslo, Norway to Minneapolis, Minnesota, for Storesletten it feels a bit like returning home. Earlier in his career, he served as monetary adviser at the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Many research collaborations and friendships developed during those four years in Minnesota. In fact, some of his most frequent co-authors are at the Minneapolis Fed still today.

An impressive CV

A native of Norway, Storesletten initially studied Math and Physics as an undergraduate. However, he eventually found his calling in Economics, a field that he felt answered concrete questions about peoples' everyday lives. He later earned his Ph.D. at Carnegie Mellon University, then began his career at the Institute for International Economic Studies at Stockholm University.

Throughout his career, Storesletten has published 35 economic papers, appearing in the most renowned economic journals: Journal of Political Economy, American Economic Review, and Econometrica. He has served as a member of the monetary policy committee for the Norwegian Central Bank, as well as editor of the Review of Economic Studies. He currently serves as the President of the European Economic Association, and he is a co-editor of Quantitative Economics. He is a Fellow of the Econometric Society and is the first European to receive the Sun-Yefang prize, the highest Chinese award for economists.

Research interests

One of the topics that most interests Kjetil is economic growth. Early in his career as a scholar, he wanted to answer questions about why certain nations thrived while others stagnated. This question drew his attention to the world's largest developing economy, China. Kjetil has written influential papers about how China managed to achieve staggering growth while quickly rising to the status of a middle-income country.

More recently, Kjetil has co-authored papers about U.S. tax policy, looking at how different localities in the country implement different levels of progressivity in tax policy. Kjetil wants to continue delving into the dynamics of economic growth by examining what barriers countries face while trying to create prospering economies. 

Beyond his academic credentials and expertise, Storesletten brings a palpable energy to the department. His enthusiasm for the work is practically contagious, according to colleagues and students.

Impact of philanthropy

Storesletten is the inaugural Richard and Beverly Fink Professor in Economics, a title he shares is "really quite an honor." When they established this fund, the Finks aimed to provide the college and department with the resources to recruit, support, and retain outstanding faculty members. With their gifts, they have helped ensure the department can build on our already-strong reputation and research excellence. This impact is already becoming apparent with Storesletten’s recruitment.

"Dick and Beverly have been among the college’s most generous benefactors. With great foresight, they have directed their giving to help advance the college’s highest aspirations."

Dean John Coleman

With his past familiarity with Minneapolis and campus, Kjetil has hit the ground running, as they say. We look forward to his continued contributions to cutting edge economic research and informing important public policy.

Innovation versus imitation: Where all that Chinese R&D is going

Read this January 14, 2022 article about research by Storesletten and co-authors.

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