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Strategic Economics Alliance (SEA)

The Strategic Economics Alliance (SEA) is a global network aiming to create a stronger link between new economic thinking and new practice by elevating new voices that have been historically and structurally marginalized. The initiative sets out to establish a more direct link between women economists who are advancing new economic thinking and change-oriented practitioners, such as heads of state, ministers, and mayors. A critical component of SEA is to ensure that the lessons from these advisory experiences feed back into academic reflection, bringing academics and policymakers together to co-lead the vision and implementation of SEA. This includes collectively identifying opportunities, sharing innovations and learning, developing, and implementing new policies and programs, and analysing their implementation and impact.

SEA was launched in June 2024. As this website continues being constructed, please visit regularly for updates and more. 

Strategic Economics Alliance

Objectives

  • Advance new economic thinking and promote inclusive and sustainable economies in both theory and practice. 
  • Build a strong network of peer support and professional development between women economists from the Global South and North.
  • Link economic thinkers with practitioners to leverage their respective knowledge, focusing on health, climate and finance.
  • Create a space where voices of female economists from diverse regional perspectives can be discussed, valued and reflected in policy. 

Our Vision

We envision a global economic system that places people and the planet at its core, moving beyond traditional theories that treat systemic issues like climate change and inequality as externalities. Our goal is to revise economic theory and practice through holistic, inclusive, and sustainable approaches.

New Theory
We advocate for an economic framework that recognizes the collective creation of value and the proactive role of public institutions in shaping markets. Our approach challenges dominant economic thinking and embraces complexity, uncertainty, and interdependence, aiming for a society where everyone can thrive. Co-creation is central to our methodology, ensuring diverse voices are integrated into the strategy and scope of our economy.

New Practice
We translate new theory into real-world contexts through practice-based theorizing, which allows us to develop, refine, and test new policies effectively. By empowering governments to actively shape their markets and promote green innovation, we can address global challenges and ensure sustainable development.

New Voices
We elevate historically marginalized voices, fostering a transnational alliance of change-oriented thinkers and practitioners. By prioritizing perspectives from the Global South and diverse communities, we aim to advance decolonized economic theories and practices that are just and equitable.

History

Why within the IIPP? In the last years, countless initiatives, institutions and schools of thought have challenged mainstream economics given its failure to address the most pressing issues of our time – from social and health to climate crises. The UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP), founded by Professor Mariana Mazzucato in 2018, is at the forefront of this global debate on how to ensure that economies work for people and the planet and are proactively designed to be inclusive, sustainable and healthy. By collaborating with governments and multilateral organisations around the globe, it is advancing the necessary paradigm shift in economic theory and practice by reimagining the state’s role in the economy, from simply fixing market failures to actively creating a different type of capitalism. From Brazil to South Africa, to Colombia and Barbados, IIPP has co-designed and advanced modern industrial and innovation strategies oriented around climate and inclusion goals.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, World Health Organization Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus established the all-female WHO Council on the Economics of Health for All to reframe health for all as a public policy objective and ensure that national and global economies and finance are structured to deliver on this ambitious goal. The Council’s final report Health for All: Transforming Economies to Deliver What Matters was published in May 2023 and is continuing to resonate with governments around the world – including in Brazil where the Portuguese translation was launched in September 2023 in partnership with the Ministry of Health and where it stands to influence Brazil’s G20 Presidency.

This background provides the perfect opportunity to harness the momentum and influence of the above initiatives, by continuing to build a global alliance of women economists from the Global South and North committed to advancing more inclusive and sustainable economies.

SEA's approach centres on bringing new economic theories to the forefront by facilitating direct engagement between innovative economists and practitioners. Building on IIPP’s methodology of practice-based theorising, SEA focuses on translating theory into practice and on strengthening the theory by drawing on real-world insights. 

SEA is currently funded by Co-Impact. We are currently in search of further funding.

People

SEA is being launched in June 2024 and is led by Professor Mariana Mazzucato and Associate Professor Carolina Alves from the UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose.

Co-Chairs:

  • Mariana Mazzucato, Professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value at the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, University College London 
  • Carolina Alves, Associate Professor in Economics at the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, University College London

Advisory Board: 

  • Jayati Ghosh, Professor of Economics at University of Massachusetts Amherst 
  • Erika Kraemer-Mbula, Professor of Economics at the University of Johannesburg 
  • Carlota Perez, Honorary Professor at Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, University College London and the Science Policy Research Unit at Sussex University
  • Bogolo Kenewendo, Regionalization & Just Transition Director; Special Adviser, UN Climate change High Level Champions; former Cabinet Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry in Botswana
  • Usha Rao, Former Under-Secretary-General and Associate Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
  • Claudia Lopez, Former Mayor of Bogota, Colombia
  • Gabriela Ramos, Assistant Director-General for Social and Human Sciences at UNESCO
The Network

This initiative is open to female economists, policymakers and officers from international organisations, governments, development banks and related fields with a demonstrated commitment to advancing sustainable and inclusive economies, as well as other forms of new economic thinking. 

We believe that representation from diverse geographical and regional backgrounds embodies one of the core richness of the SEA. 

Work-streams

SEA will have two core workstreams:

The Economic Advisory Support Workstream will draw on the network and its partners to form the core of a new advisory resource for governments looking to work with women economists to advance ambitious missions on health, climate and/or finance and generate new opportunities for advisory support at the national and sub-national level. 

The Research, Professional Development, Peer Networking and Mentorship Workstream will focus on creating the space for feeding lessons from existing policy engagements back into academic reflection, strengthening the relationship between existing academic organizations, discussing new economic theories, approaches, and ideas, as well as empowering regional female economists and organizations.

Based on the spirit of “learning by doing and then reflecting”, two different workstreams will feed off of each other while engaging in significant collaborative initiatives around the globe.

Our Alliances
Other Resources and Events

 

Download SEA Manifesto here

Event

YouTube Widget Placeholderhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3PPeSs6lJ3M

Read blog about the event here

Collaborate with Strategic Economics Alliance (SEA)

Interested in collaborating with the SEA? Send us a brief description of your work and interests related to our goals. We will get back in touch with specific engagement possibilities!

Contact

Contact:

Carolina Alves, Co-I of the Strategic Economics Alliance 
Email: carolina.alves@ucl.ac.uk

Marcela Chapa Garza, Project Manager of the Strategic Economics Alliance
Email: marcela.chapa@outlook.com