The mission of the Hutchins Center on Fiscal and Monetary Policy is to improve the quality and efficacy of fiscal and monetary policies and public understanding of them. It provides independent, non-partisan analysis and draws on the expertise of Brookings Institution scholars and of experts in government, academia, think tanks and business, as well as the guidance of its Advisory Council. By commissioning research, convening private and public events and harnessing the power of the Internet, it seeks to generate new thinking, promote constructive criticism and provide a forum for reasoned debate.
The Center was founded with a gift from the Hutchins Family Foundation.
David Wessel, Director
David joined Brookings in December 2013 as a senior fellow after 30 years on the staff of The Wall Street Journal where, most recently, he was economics editor and wrote the weekly Capital column. He is a contributing correspondent to The Wall Street Journal, appears frequently on NPR’s Morning Edition and tweets often at @davidmwessel.
Louise Sheiner, Policy Director
Louise is a senior fellow in Economic Studies at Brookings, where she pursues research on health spending and other fiscal issues. Sheiner previously served as an economist with the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System since 1993, most recently as the senior economist in the Fiscal Analysis Section for the Research and Statistics Division. She was also appointed Deputy Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy at the U.S. Department of the Treasury (1996), and served as Senior Staff Economist for the Council of Economic Advisers (1995-96). Before joining the Fed, Sheiner was an economist at the Joint Committee on Taxation. She received her Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University, as well as an undergraduate degree in biology at Harvard.
Stephanie Cencula, Associate Director
Stephanie oversees the Center’s projects and operations, including outreach, communications, and development. She was previously a senior manager with The Atlantic’s events team, and before that, spent several years with Brookings’ Center on Children and Families. She holds a B.A. in Government and Spanish from the University of Virginia.
Ben Bernanke, Distinguished Fellow
Ben is a Distinguished Fellow in residence with the Economic Studies Program at Brookings, as well as a Senior Advisor to PIMCO and Citadel. From 2006 to 2014, he was the chairman of the Federal Reserve Board. Before his appointment as chairman, Ben chaired the President’s Council of Economic Advisers from 2005 to 2006. Ben has published many articles on a wide variety of economic issues, including monetary policy and macroeconomics, and he is the author of several scholarly books and a New York Times best-selling book, The Courage to Act: A Memoir of a Crisis and its Aftermath, (October, 2015).
Donald Kohn, Robert V. Roosa Chair in International Economics
Don focuses on issues of monetary policy, financial regulation and macroeconomics. He is a 40-year veteran of the Federal Reserve System and served on the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve from 2002 to 2010, the last four years as vice chairman. He has also been appointed by the government of the United Kingdom to serve on the Financial Policy Committee at the Bank of England. He is on a number of advisory committees to US government agencies, including for the Office of Financial Research, the FDIC, and the Congressional Budget Office.
Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, Senior Fellow
Gian Maria is a senior fellow in the Hutchins Center. He was previously Deputy Director in the Research Department of the IMF (2014-21), where he directed the department’s work on multilateral surveillance, including the World Economic Outlook, G-20 reports, spillover analysis, and economic modeling. Between 2012 and 2014 he was IMF mission chief to the United States. He received his undergraduate degree in economics from Università di Roma La Sapienza in 1985 and his Ph.D. from Harvard in 1991. He joined the London School of Economics thereafter, and moved to the IMF in 1993. He has published extensively in the areas of international capital flows, international financial integration, current account sustainability, capital controls, taxation and growth, and political economy. Since 1996 he is a Research Fellow of the London-based Center for Economic Policy Research (CEPR).
Eli Asdourian, Research Assistant
Eli joined the Hutchins Center from The University of Chicago, where he graduated with an A.B. in economics and an A.B. in history. He previously interned in the Research & Information department at the Housing Assistance Council, the Institute for Youth, Education, and Families at the National League of Cities, and at the Federal Public Defender’s Office for the District of Maryland.
Haowen Chen, Project Manager
Haowen assists in project and event coordination at Hutchins and manages the production of Brookings Papers on Economic Activity (BPEA) – a semi-annual academic conference and journal published by Brookings Economic Studies program. Prior to joining Hutchins, she was a Governance Associate at the Society for Neuroscience. She received her bachelor’s degree in international studies from American University, and a master’s in research administration from Johns Hopkins University.
Alex Conner, Research Assistant
Alex joined the Hutchins Center from Brown University, where he graduated with honors in Applied Mathematics and Economics. His thesis explored methods to find more accurate solutions to economic models and grew out of prior work as a research assistant for his thesis advisor. Before that, Alex interned at the Federal Reserve Board researching maturity structures and central bank independence.
James Lee, Research Analyst
James joined the Hutchins Center from the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, where he was a Research Analyst on the Regional and National teams. He received a B.S. in Physics and B.A. in Economics from Wake Forest University, where he defended honors theses in both fields. James was previously an intern at the New York FDIC’s Risk Management Supervision division and a recipient of the Critical Language Scholarship from the Department of State.
Nasiha Salwati, Senior Research Assistant
Nasiha joined the Hutchins Center after graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she double majored in Economics and Mathematics, with a minor in Statistics. At UNC, she wrote a thesis exploring the effect of unemployment insurance benefits on labor market outcomes, specifically occupational mobility. Her other projects have included studying intergenerational mobility and the long-term effects of parental education, as well as exploring the socioeconomic factors that predict health insurance coverage in the US.
Lorae Stojanovic, Research Assistant
Lorae joined the Hutchins Center after graduating from Harvard University where she concentrated in economics with a minor in Russian language. At Harvard, she wrote an honors thesis examining the impacts of COVID-19 on housing prices in the United States. Lorae was also active in the research community, working as a public policy and economics Research Assistant at Harvard Kennedy School and as a BLISS Research fellow at the Harvard Department of Government.