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Senior Lecturer in Public Policy

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Michael Walton is Senior Lecturer in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, Senior Visiting Fellow at the Centre for Policy Research, Delhi. He was VKRV Rao Chair Professor, Institute of Social and Economic Change, Bangalore for 2008 and 2009.

From 1980-2004, he worked at the World Bank, including extended periods on Indonesia and Zimbabwe, adviser to two Chief Economists, Regional Chief Economist for East Asia and the Pacific (1995-97), Director for Poverty Reduction (1997-2000), Chief Economist for Human Development (1999-2000) and Adviser for Poverty and Human Development in Latin America and the Caribbean (2000-2004). He was part of the management group for World Development Report 2000/2001: Attacking Poverty, and played a central role in the design of the poverty reduction strategy process for low income countries. Prior to joining the World Bank, he worked for the Central Planning and Development Office for the Government of Lesotho, 1997-99.

He has been teaching at the Kennedy School since 2004, primarily in the MPA in International Development, and also in Executive Education on social enterprise. Since 2014 he has also worked with IMAGO Global Grassroots, a non-profit whose mission is to support grassroots organizations scale up, primarily with clients in India and Latin America, focusing on strategy, business plans, systems and impact assessment.

Major publications include: co-author of the World Bank's World Development Report 1990 on poverty; director of World Development Report 1995 on labor; co-editor of Culture and Public Action (Stanford University Press, 2004); co-author of Inequality in Latin America and the Caribbean: Breaking with History? (World Bank, 2004); co-director of World Development Report 2005/06 on Equity and Development; and co-editor of No Growth without Equity? Inequality, Interests and Competition in Mexico. (Palgrave Macmillan and the World Bank, 2009).

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Michael Walton has a B.A. in Philosophy and Economics and an M.Phil. in Economics, both from Oxford University.


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Outside Professional Activities For Michael Walton

Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi, India.  CPR is an independent and nonpartison research institute and think tank.  I have been Senior Visiting Fellow there since 2007, working on a number of policy and research areas on India, including urban issues, social accountability and India's political settlement.  This is an unpaid position.

Effective States and Inclusive Development Research Centre, Manchester University, UK.  This is a centre focused on the political economy of state behavior and development, notably in a project funded by the the UK's Department for International Development.  I have been involved in the broader group working on these issues, and have been commissioned, on a consultancy basis, to prepare papers on the politics of service delivery and state business relations.

Asian Development Bank, Manila, the Philippines.  ADB is a regional multilateral development bank.  I have been commissioned, on a consultancy basis, to co-author a paper on issues relating to India's rights-based welfare approach and social accountability.



Phone: 202-251-8702


Social Policy
Education, Training & Labor
Development & Economic Growth
Poverty, Inequality & Opportunity

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