About the Event: Poor countries lack infrastructure services: 1.2 billion people have no electricity, and 1 billion live more than 2 kilometers from an all-weather road. In 2015, the World Bank initiated a surge of interest in financing this need when it claimed that rich-country private capital could close the infrastructure services gap, make money, and achieve the sustainable development goals by moving from “billions to trillions” in infrastructure investment in poor countries. This paper assesses and challenges the prevailing gap thinking by introducing an equilibrium framework that distinguishes those poor countries in which the Bank’s three-fold claim is tenable from those where it is not.
About the Speaker: Peter Blair Henry is Dean Emeritus of New York University's Leonard N. Stern School of Business. The youngest person to hold the position, he assumed the Deanship in January 2010 and joined the NYU Stern Faculty as the William R. Berkley Professor of Economics and Finance. Henry joined NYU Stern from Stanford University, where he was the Konosuke Matsushita Professor of International Economics, the John and Cynthia Fry Gunn Faculty Scholar, and Associate Director of the Center for Global Business and the Economy at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business.
Henry currently serves as a director of the boards of Citigroup and Nike, as Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), and is a member of the advisory boards of Protiviti, a global consulting firm, and Biospring Partners, a growth-stage firm that invests in life sciences technology. He is also Principal investigator of the PhD Excellence Initiative, a Sloan Foundation-funded fellowship program for minority scholars seeking admission to economic doctoral programs. In 2015, Henry was awarded the Foreign Policy Association Medal, the highest honor bestowed by the organization.