Professor Sir Paul Collier is professor of economics and director of the Centre for the Study of African Economies at Oxford University. He is one of the world’s leading experts on African and resource-rich economies, with extensive research on topics such as the causes and consequences of civil war, the effects of aid, and the problems of democracy in low-income societies. Sir Paul was formerly Director of the Development Research Group at the World Bank (1998-2003).
Recent books include ‘The Plundered Planet: How to Reconcile Prosperity With Nature’ (2010), ‘Wars, Guns and Votes: Democracy in Dangerous Places’ (2009), and ‘The Bottom Billion’ (2007), which won the prestigious Lionel Gelber Prize and also the Arthur Ross Book Award from the Council on Foreign Relations (described as “the most significant award for a book on international affairs”).
In addition to his academic work, Sir Paul has had significant influence on policy issues as an advisor to governments, international organisations, and also corporations. In recent years, for example, he has been a senior advisor to Tony Blair’s Commission on Africa, addressed the UN General Assembly, and given a seminar at 10 Downing St. He is also Professor Associate of CERDI, Université d’Auvergne.