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International Development PhD student awarded King's Outstanding Thesis prize

Eduardo Ortiz-Juarez won for his thesis, ‘Living Standards: Dynamics and Comparisons. An Analytical Framework for Emerging Economies’.

Zacatecas, Mexico

The King's Outstanding Thesis Prize recognises and celebrates the outstanding talent and innovation of King’s postgraduate research students.

Research is nominated for the award by the external examiners who assess theses. They are then judged by a panel consisting of the Director of Research Talent and the Chair of the Research Degrees Examinations Board.

As part of his PhD thesis, Ortiz-Juarez used different decomposition methods in economics to explore the role of personal characteristics and geographic capital in explaining subnational and intertemporal differences in living standards within Mexico. An expanded version of this analysis has been accepted for future publication as a monograph in the UNU-WIDER Development Economics series, published by Cambridge University Press.

Ortiz-Juarez also provided a critical survey of well-being measurement methods and applied novel methodology to measure the extent of chronic poverty in the country. Typically, this type of poverty can be only identified with data that follows the same individuals over time (longitudinal data), but its availability is rare in emerging economies.

The applied methodology is an alternative which uses only one round of cross-sectional data (widely available) and offers a policy relevant solution in contexts where longitudinal data is too costly to collect. The conceptual and technical proposal of this methodology by Ortiz-Juarez and his co-authors was published last January in the Review of Income and Wealth, a journal with a long-standing tradition of publishing innovative approaches to poverty measurement.

“It’s an honour to have my PhD thesis recognised through this prize. I’ve been glad to continue my work on poverty and inequality measurement and analysis at King’s since being awarded my PhD in August 2021.”– Eduardo Ortiz-Juarez

Ortiz-Juarez is now a lecturer in Development Economics in King’s Department of International Development, with a particular interest in the study of poverty dynamics, inequalities, social policy, and green development.

He’s co-authored several papers on global poverty and inequality, including on the reversal in global income inequality and on over-optimism in the measurement of global poverty. He also featured on King’s World: We Got This podcast to discuss global poverty and universal basic income schemes, and has recently written blog posts for UNU-WIDER, UNDP, and From Poverty to Power.

Towards the end of drafting his PhD thesis, Ortiz-Juarez was awarded Mexico’s National Prize of Public Finance for his work on the effects of corruption on local poverty. This is awarded by the Government of Mexico to recognise research excellence and novelty in addressing contemporary public finance and development issues.

Ortiz-Juarez is one of 19 winners of the 2022 King’s Outstanding Thesis prize. You can see the full list of winners on King’s website.

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Eduardo  Ortiz-Juarez

Eduardo Ortiz-Juarez

Lecturer in Development Economics