Simon Johnson is the Ronald A. Kurtz (1954) Professor of Entrepreneurship at MIT Sloan School of Management, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington, D.C., and a research associate at NBER. He is a member of the Congressional Budget Office’s Panel of Economic Advisers and co-director of the NBER Africa Project.

Simon was previously chief economist of the International Monetary Fund, president of the Association for Comparative Economic Studies, and a member of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Advisory Committee on Market Information. He is a sought-after commentator on current financial and economic issues, and has recently appeared on programs such as Bill Moyers Journal, PBS NewsHour, This American Life, Fresh Air with Terry Gross, On Point with Tom Ashbrook, The Diane Rehm Show, Real Time with Bill Maher, and The Colbert Report. He also writes a weekly column for the New York Times’ Economix blog.

Simon received a B.A. in Economics and Politics from the University of Oxford, an M.A. in Economics from the University of Manchester, and a Ph.D. in Economics from MIT.


James Kwak is currently a student at the Yale Law School. Previously, he was a management consultant at McKinsey and Company and co-founder of a successful software company.

James is not, never has been, and never will be a member of the Yale Law Journal. However, on December 11, 2009, he was named Grand Heresiarch of the Ancient, Hermetic, and Occult Order of the Shrill by Brad DeLong.

James received an A.B. in Social Studies from Harvard College and an M.A. and a Ph.D. in History from the University of California, Berkeley.

(Photo by Robin Holland.)

The Baseline Scenario

In September 2008, Simon and James co-founded The Baseline Scenario, a blog dedicated to explanation and discussion of economics, finance, and public policy. Today, The Baseline Scenario is one of the leading economics blogs on the Internet, and has been cited by virtually every major newspaper, Internet site, and blog covering similar issues. It has been called “one of the most informative news sites in the blogosphere” by Bill Moyers and a “must read” by Paul Krugman.

Since founding the blog, Simon and James (often in collaboration with Peter Boone) have published articles (partial list) in many leading publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Financial Times, Los Angeles Times, BusinessWeek, The Atlantic, The New Republic, Democracy, and the online editions of The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Foreign Policy, The Guardian, Forbes, Bloomberg, and Reuters.

Contact Us

For more information about the book, to receive a review copy, or if you are interested in interviewing Simon Johnson or James Kwak, please contact Molly Erman of Random House at merman at randomhouse dot com.

Molly Erman of Random House at merman at randomhouse dot com
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