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Faculty & Research


John Fernald

Professor of Economics

Schroders Chaired Professor of European Competitiveness and Reform


Additional Information
Research Areas
  • Applied Macroeconomics
  • U.S. and Global Productivity Trends, and Emerging Asia
Teaching Areas
  • Macroeconomics (MBA)


John Fernald is the Schroders Chaired Professor of European Competitiveness and Reform and a professor of economics at INSEAD. He is also a senior research adviser for international economics at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco (on leave after August 2017). At INSEAD, Mr. Fernald teaches the macroeconomics core course in the MBA program and presents on the global macroeconomic environment for executives.

Mr. Fernald’s research focuses primarily on applied macroeconomics, U.S. and global productivity trends, and emerging Asia. This research has been regularly cited in the business and academic press. The Economist magazine called Mr. Fernald “…the foremost authority on American productivity figures,” and The Wall Street Journal described Mr. Fernald as “the Fed’s point man on productivity.”

At the San Francisco Fed, Mr. Fernald previously served as vice president and team leader for the macroeconomics research group. Among his responsibilities at the Fed, Mr. Fernald advised the Bank President on monetary policy and regularly attended meetings of the Federal Open Market Committee. Mr. Fernald has also served at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (where he was the desk officer for China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan), and as senior economist for international economics at the U.S. President’s Council of Economic Advisers. He has taught macroeconomics at the University of Michigan and the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business as well as at INSEAD Business School. He speaks frequently at central banks, international institutions, business organizations, and academic conferences around the world.

Mr. Fernald received A.B. and PhD degrees in economics from Harvard University and an M.Sc. degree in economics from the London School of Economics. His research has been published in journals such as the Journal of Political Economy, American Economic Review, Journal of Monetary Economics, and European Economic Review.