Paul Collier is one of the world's leading experts on developing markets and financial opportunities within the poorest countries. Director for the Centre of the Study of African Economies at Oxford University, Collier is currently Advisor to the Strategy and Policy Department of the IMF and advisor to the Africa Region of the World Bank, where he previously served as Director of the Development Research Group. He researches the causes and consequences of civil war, the effects of aid and the problems of democracy in low-income and natural-resource-rich societies.
From April 1998 to April 2003, he was the director of development research at the World Bank and has been the advisor to the British government's Commission on Africa.
Within macroeconomics, he has focused on external shocks, exchange rate and trade policies. He completed the first ever external review of IMF operations for the Board of the IMF (with Professors Gunning and Hamada, and Dr. Botchwey). Within microeconomics, Mr. Collier has focused on labour and financial markets, and on rural development, on which he has written three books and many articles. Within political economy, he has worked on the process of policy reform, and has also published a series of articles on "restraining the state."
As one of the world's leading experts on African economies, Collier regularly writes columns and commentary for such publications as the Independent, New York Times, Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post.
His bestselling book, The Bottom Billion has been compared to Jeffrey Sachs's The End of Poverty and William Easterly's The White Man's Burden in its scope and impact, identifies the four traps that keep such countries mired in poverty, and outlines ways to help them escape. He is also the author of Wars, Guns and Votes: Democracy in Dangerous Places. His most recent book, entitled The Plundered Planet: How to reconcile prosperity with nature, was published in May of 2010.
Collier was selected by Foreign Policy Magazine as #29 on the list of the World's Top 100 Global Thinkers of 2011. Mr. Collier is a Professor Associate of CERDI, Université d'Auvergne and a Fellow of the CEPR, London. He holds a Distinction Award from Oxford University and has won the Edgar Graham Prize.
"Collier sheds much light on how the world should tackle its biggest moral challenge. [He] shows, too, how far western governments and other external actors are from currently giving the sort of help these countries desperately need."