Famous 21st Century Economists

Find out more about the greatest 21st Century Economists, including Janet Yellen, Angus Deaton, Amartya Sen, Raghuram Rajan and Alan Greenspan.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite Economists

 1 Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell.
7
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: June 30, 1930
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Gastonia, North Carolina

One of the few personalities known for his disdain of self-promotion, Thomas Sowell is an important American social theorist and economist. Over the years, he has played a prominent role working as a faculty member of many prestigious universities, such as the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and Cornell University

 2 Alan Greenspan

Alan Greenspan.
7
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: March 6, 1926
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Washington Heights, New York, United States
Economist Alan Greenspan chaired the U.S. Federal Reserve from 1987 to 2006. It is believed that his easy money policies had caused the subprime mortgage crisis of 2008. He now works as a consultant through his organization Greenspan Associates LLC. He was also trained in clarinet at the Juilliard School.
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 3 Jeffrey Sachs

Jeffrey Sachs.
5
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: November 5, 1954
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Detroit, Michigan, United States

 4 Kenneth Arrow

Kenneth Arrow.
3
Famous As: Economist & Political Theorist
Birthdate: August 23, 1921
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New York City, USA
Died: February 21, 2017

 5 Manmohan Singh

Manmohan Singh.
8
Famous As: Former Prime Minister of India
Birthdate: September 26, 1932
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Gah, Punjab, British India (present-day Punjab, Pakistan)

The 13th Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh became the first Sikh in office when he took office in 2004. A prominent economist and academic, he held several key posts in the Government of India in the 1970s and 1980s. Known for his humility, he  has been described by the media as "one of the world's most revered leaders."

 6 Peter Navarro

Peter Navarro.
4
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: July 15, 1949
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
Economist and writer Peter Navarro has served as the Director of the Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy and the Director of the National Trade Council under former president Donald Trump. He has also authored books such as Death by China and taught at the University of California.

 7 Eric Weinstein

Eric Weinstein
4
Famous As: Mathematician
Birthdate: October 26, 1965
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States

Apart from being the MD of Thiel Capital, mathematician and economist Eric Weinstein is also a researcher at Oxford. The Harvard alumnus had quit academia for 20 years before he returned again. He coined the term “intellectual dark web” and works on topics such as gauge theory, risk management, and immigration.

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 8 Queen Máxima of the Netherlands

Queen Máxima of the Netherlands
4
Famous As: Queen
Birthdate: May 17, 1971
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Buenos Aires, Argentina

 9 Ben Bernanke

Ben Bernanke.
6
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: December 13, 1953
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Augusta, Georgia, United States

Ben Bernanke is an American economist who served two terms as the chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System from 2006 to 2014, during which he supervised the Federal Reserve's response to the global financial crisis (GFC). For his efforts during GFC, Ben Bernanke was named Time Person of the Year in 2009.

 10 Lawrence Kudlow

Lawrence Kudlow.
4
Famous As: Director of the National Economic Council
Birthdate: August 20, 1947
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Englewood, New Jersey

Lawrence Kudlow began his career as staff economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and then served as financial analyst at Wall Street, before joining the Ronald Reagan administration. Later he became an economic media commentator with National Review, and hosted several shows on CNBC. During the Trump administration, he served as Director of the National Economic Council.

 11 Lawrence Summers

Lawrence Summers
4
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: November 30, 1954
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: New Haven, Connecticut, United States

Apart from being the president of Harvard, Lawrence Summers has also been the U.S. secretary of the treasury, the World Bank’s chief economist, and the NEC director. The MIT alumnus became one of the youngest tenured faculty members at Harvard. He also writes regularly for The Washington Post.

 12 Thomas Piketty

Thomas Piketty
4
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: May 7, 1971
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Clichy, France

French economist and professor Thomas Piketty is best known for his book Capital in the Twenty-first Century, which became a New York Times bestseller. He has taught at prestigious institutes such as LSE and MIT. He proposed taxing the rich to prevent high incomes and not merely to increase government revenue.

 13 Mark Carney

Mark Carney
4
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: March 16, 1965
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Fort Smith, Northwest Territories, Canada

After his 13-year stint with Goldman Sachs, Mark Carney served as the governor of the Bank of Canada and the Bank of England. He was also part of the Canadian finance department. He is an ice-hockey lover and played the sport actively during the school and university days.

 14 Yulia Navalnaya

Yulia Navalnaya
4
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: July 24, 1976
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

Born to a scientist father, Yulia Navalnaya grew up to be an acclaimed economist. She met her husband, lawyer and Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, while vacationing in Turkey. She has since been beside him through a number of tumultuous events, including his alleged poisoning by Russian officials.

 15 Urjit Patel

Urjit Patel
4
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: October 28, 1963
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Nairobi, Kenya

Urjit Patel is an Indian economist. From 2016 to 2018, he served as the Governor of the Reserve Bank of India. In 2018, he resigned stating personal reasons. He also became the fifth governor to have resigned before the completion of his term. Urjit Patel is the recipient of Yale University’s Wilbur Cross Medal. 

 16 Esther Duflo

Esther Duflo.
4
Famous As: American-French Economist
Birthdate: October 25, 1972
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Paris, France

Esther Duflo is a French–American economist. She is credited with co-founding the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab, a global research center that works towards reducing poverty worldwide. In 2019, she shared the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences with Michael Kremer and Abhijit Banerjee for their efforts to reduce poverty.

 17 Paul Volcker

Paul Volcker.
4
Famous As: Former Chair of the Federal Reserve
Birthdate: September 5, 1927
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Cape May, New Jersey, United States
Died: December 8, 2019

 18 Abhijit Banerjee

Abhijit Banerjee.
4
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: February 21, 1961
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Calcutta, India

Born to economics professor parents, Abhijit Banerjee grew up in India before he moved to the U.S. to study at Harvard. He later taught at Harvard and Princeton and is now associated with MIT. His studies on the ways of reducing world poverty won him a Nobel Prize.

 19 Arthur Laffer

Arthur Laffer
5
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: August 14, 1940
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Youngstown, Ohio, United States

Yale and Stanford alumnus Arthur Laffer is now one of the greatest economists of the U.S. Best known for his Laffer curve and his theory of taxes that explained how low tax rates could eventually provide higher revenues, he has been crucial to the American tax system.

 20 Zhou Youguang

Zhou Youguang
4
Famous As: Chinese economist and linguist
Birthdate: January 13, 1906
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Changzhou, Jiangsu, Qing dynasty Qing Empire
Died: January 14, 2017

Best remembered for creating a new writing system that allows Mandarin to be written in Roman alphabets, Chinese economist Zhou Youguang started working on the project in 1955, reaching his goal after three years of labor. Known as Father of Pinyin, he has also authored forty books, most notable among them being The Historical Evolution of Chinese Languages and Scripts.

 21 Dan Ariely

Dan Ariely
4
Famous As: Psychologist
Birthdate: April 29, 1967
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: New York City, New York, U.S.

Dan Ariely is an Israeli-American professor and author. He is the founder of the research institution, The Center for Advanced Hindsight, and the co-founder of several companies. Currently, he is also the James B. Duke Professor of psychology and behavioral economics at Duke University. He is the author of the three New York Times bestsellers as well. 

 22 Kristalina Georgieva

Kristalina Georgieva.
3
Famous As: Managing Director of the IMF
Birthdate: August 13, 1953
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Sofia, Bulgaria

Bulgarian environmental economist Kristalina Georgieva, the MD of IMF, believes developed nations should help low-income countries to prevent the Great Divergence. Her career boasts of a stint at the World Bank Group. She made it to the 2020 Time 100 and was named the European of the Year in 2010.

 23 George P. Shultz

George P. Shultz
4
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: December 13, 1920
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States

 24 Janet Yellen

Janet Yellen
6
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: August 13, 1946
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States

Economist Janet Yellen has had an illustrious career as an academic and researcher, and has taught at Harvard University and other reputed institutes. After chairing the Federal Reserve for 4 years, she is now the United States Secretary of the Treasury. She is married to Nobel-winning economist George Akerlof.

 25 Mateusz Morawiecki

Mateusz Morawiecki
3
Famous As: Prime Minister of Poland
Birthdate: June 20, 1968
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Wrocław, Poland

 26 Mohamed A. El-Erian

Mohamed A. El-Erian
3
Famous As: Businessman
Birthdate: August 19, 1958
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States

Born to Egyptian parents in New York, Mohamed A. El-Erian grew up in the U.S., Egypt, and France, with his diplomat father. Educated at Cambridge and Oxford, he later served as the CEO of PIMCO. Apart from being a Bloomberg columnist, he has also written bestsellers such as When Markets Collide.

 27 Angus Deaton

Angus Deaton
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: October 19, 1945
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Edinburgh, Scotland

British-American economist and Nobel laureate Angus Deaton revolutionized applied economics with his work on consumption, savings, poverty, and development. Apart from teaching at Princeton, he has penned multiple award-winning papers and given rise to concepts such as the Deaton Paradox. He was also the first to receive the Frisch Medal.

 28 Peter R. Orszag

Peter R. Orszag.
3
Famous As: Economist, Banker
Birthdate: December 16, 1968
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, United States

 29 Carlos Salinas de Gortari

Carlos Salinas de Gortari.
4
Famous As: President
Birthdate: April 3, 1948
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Mexico City, Mexico

Economist Carlos Salinas de Gortari boasts of a PhD from Harvard. The former Mexican president is known for opening up his country to foreign investments. Riddled with controversies and corruption scandals, he stepped down and went into exile later. He is considered one of the most-hated Mexican leaders ever.

 30 Evan Davis

Evan Davis
3
Famous As: Journalist
Birthdate: April 8, 1962
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Malvern, Worcestershire Malvern, Worcestershire, England

Renowned economist and award-winning BBC journalist Evan Davis is best known for presenting shows such as Dragons' Den, Newsnight, and Today. The Oxford and Harvard alumnus has also been BBC's economics editor and has co-authored books such as Public Spending. He is openly gay and is married to a French architect.

 31 Steven Levitt

Steven Levitt
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: May 29, 1967
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

 32 Phil Gramm

Phil Gramm
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: July 8, 1942
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Fort Benning, Georgia, United States U.S.

 33 Dambisa Moyo

Dambisa Moyo
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: February 2, 1969
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Lusaka, Zambia

 34 Sonali Deraniyagala

Sonali Deraniyagala
3
Famous As: Memoirist, Economist
Birthdate: 1964 AD
Birthplace: Colombo, Sri Lanka

 35 George Akerlof

George Akerlof
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: June 17, 1940
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: New Haven, Connecticut, United States

 36 Mariana Mazzucato

Mariana Mazzucato
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: June 16, 1968
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Rome, Italy

Award-winning economist and University College London professor Mariana Mazzucato was born to a physicist father in Italy. She has also held academic posts at institutes such as the University of Sussex. She is best known for her research on economic innovation and has penned books such as The Entrepreneurial State.

 37 Kevin Hassett

Kevin Hassett
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: March 20, 1962
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Greenfield, Massachusetts Greenfield, Massachusetts, U.S.

 38 Gary Cohn

Gary Cohn.
3
Famous As: Investment Banker
Birthdate: August 27, 1960
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.

 39 Vicky Pryce

Vicky Pryce
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: June 30, 1952
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Athens, Greece

 40 William Nordhaus

William Nordhaus
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: May 31, 1941
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States

 41 Alan Krueger

Alan Krueger
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: September 17, 1960
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Livingston, New Jersey, United States
Died: March 16, 2019

 42 Myron Scholes

Myron Scholes.
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: July 1, 1941
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Timmins, Ontario, Canada

Nobel Prize-winning Canadian-American economist Myron Scholes is best known for co-establishing the Black-Scholes options pricing model. He was associated with MIT Sloan and the University of Chicago Booth School of Business before moving to Stanford. He has served on the economic boards of companies such as Stamos Partners, too.

 43 Sahra Wagenknecht

Sahra Wagenknecht
3
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: July 16, 1969
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Jena, Germany

 44 Robert C. Merton

Robert C. Merton.
3
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: July 31, 1944
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: New York City, New York, USA

 45 James Rodney Schlesinger

James Rodney Schlesinger
3
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: February 15, 1929
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: New York City, New York, U.S.
Died: March 27, 2014

 46 Anna Schwartz

Anna Schwartz
2
Famous As: Economist
Birthdate: November 11, 1915
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: The Bronx, New York, United States
Died: June 21, 2012

 47 Philipp Hildebrand

Philipp Hildebrand
3
Famous As: Banker
Birthdate: July 19, 1963
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Bern, Switzerland

 48 Raymundo Capetillo

Raymundo Capetillo
3
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: September 1, 1943
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Mexico City, Mexico
Died: July 12, 2020

 49 Jeroen Dijsselbloem

Jeroen Dijsselbloem
3
Famous As: Politician, Economist
Birthdate: March 29, 1966
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Eindhoven, Netherlands

 50 Robert Aumann

Robert Aumann
3
Famous As: Mathematician
Birthdate: June 8, 1930
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Robert Aumann is an Israeli-American mathematician. He is a professor at the Center for the Study of Rationality in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel and a member of the United States National Academy of Sciences. A founding member of the Stony Brook Center for Game Theory, he received the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 2005.