Michael Walton Photo
Senior Lecturer in Public Policy, Emeritus
Assistant: Tamara Tiska

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Michael Walton is Senior Lecturer Emeritus 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 is the Faculty Lead for the online course on Policy Design and Delivery within HKS' Public Leadership Credential. 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).


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


Executive Education Programs

Academic Journal/Scholarly Articles

Book Chapters

Edited Volumes

HKS Faculty Research Working Paper Series

Research Papers/Reports

Transparent Engagement 

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Outside Professional Activities For Michael Walton

Organization Relationship
IMAGO Global Grassroots Consulting
IMAGO Global Grassroots Research or teaching appointment


Assistant: Tamara Tiska


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

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Harvard Kennedy School
79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138