International Development Secretary Douglas Alexander MP today launched the new International Growth Centre (IGC), to be led by the University of Oxford and the London School of Economics (LSE), to provide practical help to promote economic growth in developing countries. The Executive Director of the Centre will be Gobind Nankani while Professor Paul Collier of the University of Oxford and Professor Robin Burgess of the LSE will be Co-Directors. Other distinguished names associated with IGC are Lord Sir Nicholas Stern and Professor Tim Besley of LSE, Professor Stefan Dercon of Oxford, Nobel Laureate Mike Spence of Stanford and Professor Kenneth Rogoff of Harvard.
The Centre will be funded by the Department for International Development (DFID), which will provide £37million over the next three years. At the launch at the LSE on 10 December, Mr Alexander described the Centre as a ‘global brains trust’, which could improve the ability of developing countries to cope with effects of the economic downturn and provide innovative research on growth.
As well as commissioning and conducting research, the Oxford-LSE hub will seek to create a global network of experts by forging partnerships with individuals, networks and institutions from all over the world. The IGC, together with its partners, will be a unique resource providing a ‘hotline’ to the advice from world experts for developing countries that need practical support on issues, such as finance, agricultural yields, the energy sector or policies for the economy as a whole.