Faculty of Social & Historical Sciences


Prestigious Yrjö Jahnsson Prize 2019 awarded to Professor Imran Rasul in Economics

12 April 2019

Congratulations to Professor Imran Rasul from the Department of Economics who has been announced as the joint winner of the prestigious Yrjö Jahnsson Prize, along with Professor Oriana Bandiera from LSE.

Imran Rasul Professor of Economics at University College London

The Yrjö Jahnsson Prize is a biennial award which is presented to an European economist who has made a contribution in theoretical and applied research that is significant to the economics field in Europe.

The European Economic Association (EEA) announced that the 2019 Award Selection Committee decided to jointly award Professor Imran Rasul and Professor Bandiera the Yrjö Jahnsson Prize for their work on the role of social relationships in economics, which has provided “salient contributions” to the field.

The two economists were also celebrated for their pioneering field experiments within the workplace and social networks. The EEA explains that Rasul and Bandiera’s experiments have “become a role model for randomised control trials for incentive treatments and they have deeply influenced the applied microeconomics field. Their transformative work has inspired a generation of applied economists”.

On receiving the Yrjö Jahnsson Prize, Professor Imran Rasul says: “It is a great honour to receive this award. It would not have been possible without all the great colleagues, and students, I have at UCL Economics and the Institute for Fiscal Studies”.

“My work combines microeconometric methods, theory and measurement tools. I have engaged in primary data collection, and the design and implementation of randomized control trials. I have always tried to draw on insights from economics and other disciplines, to answer policy relevant questions. These are all core aspects of how economic science is conducted at UCL”.

“There has never been a better time to study economics and to use its tools to investigate pressing societal challenges, such as the causes and consequences of inequality, poverty reduction, and the changing landscape of labour markets. I look forward to working with colleagues at UCL and the IFS in using economic analysis to provide rigorous scientific answers to how these issues can be understood and tackled”.

Head of the Economics Department, Antonio Cabrales, praises Imran for also being “very influential outside academia”, explaining how he promoted the #WhatEconomistsReallyDo hashtag “to dispel erroneous notions about economic research”.

This is the second year in succession a member of the Department of Economics at UCL has won the Yrjö Jahnsson Prize. The last recipient of the award was Professor Ran Spiegler in 2017.