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Benjamin Jones Profile

Benjamin Jones is codirector of the NBER’s Innovation Policy Working Group and a research associate affiliated with the Productivity, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship Pro­gram and the Development Economics Program. He is the Gordon and Llura Gund Family Professor of Entrepreneurship at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.

His research focuses on the sources of growth in advanced economies, with an emphasis on innovation, entrepreneurship, and scientific progress. He also studies global economic development, including the roles of education, climate, and national leadership in explaining the wealth and poverty of nations.

Jones received his bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from Princeton University in 1995, a master’s in economics from Oxford University in 1997, and a PhD in economics from MIT in 2003. He has worked in the US Treasury Department and with the Council of Economic Advisers in the White House. He is a nonresident senior fellow of the Brookings Institution and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Jones lives in Chicago with his spouse and three children.


1. Science: The Endless Frontier,” Bush V. US Government Printing Office, 1945.   Go to ⤴︎
2. The Dual Frontier: Patentable Inventions and Prior Scientific Advance,” Ahmadpoor M, Jones B. Science 57(6351), August 2017, pp. 583–587.   Go to ⤴︎
3. Ibid. See also “Standing on the Shoulders of Science,” Watzinger M, Schnitzer M. Centre for Economic Policy Research Discussion Paper 13766, July 2021.   Go to ⤴︎
4. Science as a Public Good: Public Use and Funding of Science,” Yin Y, Dong Y, Wang K, Wang D, Jones B. NBER Working Paper 28748, April 2021.   Go to ⤴︎
5. A Calculation of the Social Returns to Innovation,” Jones B, Summers L. NBER Working Paper 27863, September 2020, and in Innovation and Public Policy, Goolsbee A, Jones B, editors. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2022.   Go to ⤴︎
6. Immigration and Entrepreneurship in the United States,” Azoulay P, Jones B, Kim JD, Miranda J. NBER Working Paper 27778, September 2020, and American Economic Review: Insights 4(1), March 2022, pp. 71–88.   Go to ⤴︎
7. The Contribution of High-Skilled Immigrants to Innovation in the United States,” Bernstein S, Diamond R, McQuade T, Pousada B. Stanford Graduate School of Business Working Paper 3748, November 2018.   Go to ⤴︎
8. Age and Great Invention,” Jones B. NBER Working Paper 11359, May 2005, and Review of Economics and Statistics 92(1), February 2010, pp. 1–14.     Go to ⤴︎
9. Age and High-Growth Entrepreneurship,” Azoulay P, Jones B, Kim JD, Miranda J. NBER Working Paper 24489, April 2018, and American Economic Review: Insights 2(1), March 2020, pp. 65–82.   Go to ⤴︎

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