About the NBER
Founded in 1920, the National Bureau of Economic Research is a private,
nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization dedicated to promoting a greater
understanding of how the economy works. The NBER is committed to undertaking
and disseminating unbiased economic research among public policymakers,
business professionals, and the academic community.
Over the years the NBER's research agenda has encompassed a wide variety of
issues that confront our society. Early research focused on the
aggregate economy, examining in detail the business cycle and long-term
economic growth. Simon Kuznets' pioneering work on national income accounting,
Wesley Mitchell's influential study of the business cycle, and Milton Friedman's
research on the demand for money and the determinants of consumer spending were
among the early studies done at the NBER. A summary of the NBER's early development can be found at:
Toward a Firmer Basis of Economic Policy: The Founding of the National Bureau of Economic Research, Solomon Fabricant, 1984
The NBER Today
The NBER is the nation's leading nonprofit economic research organization.
Twenty-two Nobel Prize winners
in Economics and thirteen past chairs of the President's Council of Economic Advisers have been
researchers at the NBER. The more than 1,300 professors of economics and
business now teaching at colleges and universities in North America who are
NBER researchers are the leading scholars in their fields.
These Bureau associates concentrate on four types of empirical
research: developing new statistical measurements, estimating quantitative
models of economic behavior, assessing the economic effects of public policies, and projecting the effects of alternative policy proposals. The NBER is supported by research grants from government agencies and private foundations, by investment income, and by contributions from individuals and corporations. In FY 2012, as shown in the Summary Financial Statement, our contributions totaled less than $300,000. The largest corporate contribution was $40,000.
Organization of the NBER
The NBER is governed by a Board of Directors with representatives from the
leading U.S. research universities and major national economics organizations.
Other prominent economists from business, trade unions, and academe also sit on
the Bureau's Board. James Poterba is the NBER's President and Chief
Executive Officer. In addition to the Research Associates and Faculty Research
Fellows, the Bureau employs a support staff of 45. The Bureau's main office is
in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It has a branch office in New York City.
NBER Governance Documents
NBER Branch Office
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