MANILA, PHILIPPINES (23 November 2016) — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has appointed Yasuyuki Sawada, a professor at the University of Tokyo’s Graduate School of Economics, as Chief Economist. Mr. Sawada is expected to assume office in the spring of 2017 after going through formal procedures at the University of Tokyo.
Mr. Sawada, a Japanese national, has over 20 years of experience as an economist, researcher, and academic. He has worked at the ADB Institute in Tokyo and served as a consultant for various projects at the World Bank Group. A leading figure in development economics and applied microeconometrics, he has also served as a visiting professor at Stanford University’s Stanford Center for International Development, and adjunct professor of economics at Korea University.
“I’m humbled and excited to join ADB at this pivotal moment in Asia’s development journey,” Mr. Sawada said. “As the key knowledge institution in the region, ADB strives to provide its developing member countries with the best research and policy advice it can offer to promote their development agenda. I look forward to contributing to this effort.”
As Chief Economist, Mr. Sawada will act as ADB's spokesperson on economic issues and head its Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department, which carries out policy research on development challenges facing Asia and the Pacific. The department also works closely with the international research community and produces the Asian Development Outlook, ADB's flagship economic report.
Mr. Sawada has conducted many field studies in developing countries and has a deep insight about development issues. His research has contributed to the works of various development institutions including the Japan International Cooperation Agency, Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies, Crawford School of Public Policy’s Australia-Japan Research Center at the Australian National University, and the Pakistan Institute of Development Economics. He has also published and reviewed numerous books, reports and journal articles, particularly on the topics of economics, disaster resilience and recovery, foreign aid, and poverty dynamics.
Mr. Sawada earned a Ph.D. in Economics and a Master’s degree in International Development Policy at Stanford University. He also received Master’s degrees in International Relations at the University of Tokyo, and Economics at Osaka University and Bachelor’s degree in Economics at Keio University.
ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, ADB in December 2016 will mark 50 years of development partnership in the region. It is owned by 67 members—48 from the region. In 2015, ADB assistance totaled $27.2 billion, including cofinancing of $10.7 billion.