Former Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Raghuram Rajan’s name has been featured in the list of probables for this year’s Nobel Prize in Economics brought out by Clarivate Analytics, a firm that maintains a list of dozens of possible Nobel Prize winners based on research citations. According to Clarivate, Rajan is considered a candidate for his “contributions illuminating the dimensions of decisions in corporate finance.”
Rajan has been selected for his significant contributions in the field. At the age of 40, he was the first non-western and the youngest to become the chief economist at the International Monetary Fund. Rajan shot to big fame three years after he predicted a financial crisis at an annual gathering of economists and bankers in the US in 2005.
In 2013, he was appointed as the RBI Governor by the previous UPA government. Although Rajan wanted a second term, he was not offered an extension by the current NDA regime. His three-year term as RBI governor ended on September 4, 2016. Rajan was also considered as a vocal RBI Governor. Currently, Rajan is the Katherine Dusak Miller Distinguished Service Professor of Finance at the Booth School of Business, University of Chicago.
The entry to the list does not guarantee that Rajan is a front-runner but he is a probable who stands a chance to win. Compiled by Clarivate Analytics, Rajan is one of the six economists on the list of probable winners. Clarivate said these were Citation Laureates – standouts whose research is clearly “of Nobel Class” according to its significance and utility, as attested by markedly high citation tallies recorded in the Web of Science.
The six selected include Colin Camerer of the California Institute of Technology and George Loewenstein of Carnegie Mellon University (for pioneering research in behavioural economics and in neuroeconomics), Robert Hall of Stanford University (for his analysis of worker productivity and studies of recessions and unemployment), and Michael Jensen of Harvard, Stewart Myers of MIT and Raghuram Rajan of the University of Chicago (for their contributions illuminating the dimensions of decisions in corporate finance).
The former RBI governor had also published a book titled “I Do What I Do” with his “commentary and speeches” exactly a year after his term ended. His book was to convey what it was like to be at the helm of the central bank in “those turbulent but exciting times”.
In his book he wrote, “I was asked by the government in February 2016 for my views on demonetisation, which I gave orally. Although there might be long-term benefits, I felt the likely short-term economic costs would outweigh them, and felt there were potentially better alternatives to achieve the main goal.”
Earlier in 2011, Rajan wrote the acclaimed “Fault Lines” on how hidden financial fractures threaten the world economy.
An IIT Delhi graduate, Rajan is the winner of the British magazine Central Banking’s Central Banker of the Year award for his handling of the rupee crisis in 2013 and bringing back foreign investors to the country. He has also served as visiting professor at Stockholm School of Economics and at Kellogg School of Management. He was also a visiting professor at MIT Sloan School of Management.
According to the official website of the Nobel Prize, the economics prize will be announced in Stockholm on Monday.
In the last 15 years, 45 of the selected researchers had gone on to receive a Nobel – nine in the same year in which they were tipped by Clarivate and 18 within two years of the distinction.