Ray Chetty headshot

Raj Chetty

William A. Ackman Professor of Economics, Harvard University and Director, Opportunity Insights

October 25, 2023 — 4:10 PM

Add to Google Calendar 10/25/2023 4:10 PM 10/25/2023 6:00 PM America/Los_Angeles Creating Equality of Opportunity: New Insights from Big Data

About the Lectures Lecture 1 – The Science of Economic Opportunity: New Insights from Big Data Wednesday, October 25, 2023, 4:10 p.m. The Bancroft Hotel — 2680 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, CA 94704 Register Children’s chances of earning more than their … Continued

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About the Lectures

Lecture 1 – The Science of Economic Opportunity: New Insights from Big Data
Wednesday, October 25, 2023, 4:10 p.m.
The Bancroft Hotel — 2680 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, CA 94704

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Children’s chances of earning more than their parents have fallen from 90% to 50% over the past half century in America. How can we restore the American Dream of upward mobility for all children? In this talk, Raj Chetty, director of Opportunity Insights, will show how big data from varied sources ranging from anonymized tax records to Facebook social network data is helping us uncover the science of economic opportunity. Among other topics, the talk will discuss how and why children’s chances of climbing the income ladder vary across neighborhoods, the drivers of racial disparities in economic mobility, and the role of social capital as a driver of upward mobility.  The talk will present data on the state of economic opportunity in California in particular to provide a local context to these national patterns.

Lecture 2 – Policies to Restore the American Dream
Thursday, October 26, 2023, 4:10 p.m.
The Bancroft Hotel — 2680 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, CA 94704

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Building on the lessons about the determinants of economic opportunity, the second lecture in this series will focus on three policy levers to increase upward mobility: reducing racial and economic segregation through more effective affordable housing programs, investing in place-based policies, and strengthening higher education. The lecture will give specific examples of pilot studies and interventions in each of these domains that are help inform the design of policy and practice from the federal to state to local levels, including at institutions of higher education such as UC Berkeley. The talk will conclude by giving some illustrations of how these policy proposals to improve opportunity are being scaled nationally, providing a pathway to expand opportunities for all.

About Raj Chetty

Raj Chetty is the William A. Ackman Professor of Public Economics at Harvard University. He is also the Director of Opportunity Insights, which uses “big data” to understand how we can give children from disadvantaged backgrounds better chances of succeeding. Chetty’s research combines empirical evidence and economic theory to help design more effective government policies. His work on topics ranging from tax policy and unemployment insurance to education and affordable housing has been widely cited in academia, media outlets, and Congressional testimony. Chetty received his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 2003 and is one of the youngest tenured professors in Harvard’s history. Before joining the faculty at Harvard, he was a professor at UC-Berkeley and Stanford University. Chetty has received numerous awards for his research, including a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship and the John Bates Clark medal, given to the economist under 40 whose work is judged to have made the most significant contribution to the field.