Wing Woo

Adjunct Senior Research Scholar

Wing Woo

Wing Thye Woo is Professor at University of California at Davis, Professor at Sunway University in Kuala Lumpur (heading the Jeffrey Cheah Institute on Southeast Asia and the Jeffrey Sachs Center on Sustainable Development), Professor at Fudan University in Shanghai, Professor at the Institute of Population and Labor Economics of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing, Distinguished Fellow at the Penang Institute; and Director of the East Asian Program within the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University. His current research focuses on macroeconomic management of open economies, and on the growth challenges (e.g. the middle-income trap, and the Sustainable Development Goals) of the East Asian economies, particularly, China, Indonesia and Malaysia. Wing’s publications include Macroeconomic Crisis and Long-Term Growth: The Case of Indonesia,1965-1990 (World Bank Press, 1994), ), Ranking the Liveability of the Major Cities in the World (World Scientific, 2012), and A New Global Reserve System for a Transformed Global Economy, and the Design of the East Asian Component (MIT Press, forthcoming).

Wing's article "The Monetary Approach to Exchange Rate Determination under Rational Expectations: The Dollar-Deutschemark Case," Journal of International Economics, February 1985, was identified by JIE in 2000 to be one of the twenty-five most cited articles in its 30 years of history.  He was a consultant to the comprehensive tax and exchange rate reforms implemented by China in January 1994 (Fiscal Management and Economic Reform in the People's Republic of China, Oxford University Press, 1995). From 1994-96, he led an international team (which included Leszek Balcerowicz, Boris Fedorov, Fan Gang and Jeffrey D. Sachs) to study the reform experiences of centrally-planned economies (Economies in Transition: Comparing Asia and Europe, MIT Press, 1997. During 1997-1998, Wing served as a special advisor to the U.S. Treasury; and he headed the project “Asia Competitiveness Report 1999” to analyze the Asian financial crisis for the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, February 1999 (The Asian Financial Crisis: Lessons for a Resilient Asia, MIT Press, 2000).

From 2002-2005, Wing was the Special Advisor for East Asian Economies in the Millennium Project of the United Nations.  In July 2005, he was appointed to the International Advisory Panel to Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi of Malaysia; and he was the Executive Director of the Penang Institute in Malaysia in 2012-2013. In 2001, Wing helped to establish the Asian Economic Panel (AEP), a forum of 80 specialists on Asian economies which meets tri-annually to discuss important Asian economic issues and publishes the Asian Economic Papers, MIT Press (of which Wing is the Editor-in-Chief).  He was President of the Chinese Economists Association of North America (CEANA) in 2001-2002, and was President of the Chinese Economists Society (CES) in 2015-2016. In 2004, the University of California at Davis awarded him its Distinguished Scholarly Public Service Award; in 2006, he was appointed a Chang Jiang Professor by the Ministry of Education of China; in 2009, the Governor of Penang awarded him the chivalry order of Darjah Setia Pangkuan Negeri, which bestows on him the title Dato; and in 2016, he was appointed a National Distinguished Expert under the Thousand Talents Program of China.

Wing was born in 1954 in George Town, Penang, Malaysia; where he was a member of the 2nd Georgetown (S) Senior Scout Troop, out of Methodist Boys' School.  He graduated from Swarthmore College in 1976 with a B.A. (High Honors) in Economics, and a B.S. in Engineering; received an M.A. in Economics from Yale in 1978, and an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard in 1982.

Selected Publications