Yale has convinced economics professor Pinelopi Goldberg to come to New Haven — finally.
First Yale tried to get Goldberg to come to graduate school here, but she chose instead to attend Stanford University. After she graduated in 1992, she declined Yale’s offer to join its faculty and then declined again a few years later.
But she acknowledged that perhaps fate dictated her eventual arrival here because Monday Goldberg accepted Yale’s offer to become the first-ever tenured female in the University’s economics department.
“This time, my personal situation worked out,” Columbia University’s Goldberg said.
Goldberg, who works in areas of microeconomics including international trade and industrial organization, is the second new senior economics professor who will come to Yale, though these two professors represent only a part of the department’s grand plan.
But while the department still has five senior offers outstanding, economics chair David Pearce said he is focusing on Goldberg’s acceptance.
“I spend most of my life doing junior and senior recruiting,” Pearce said. “This is the first acceptance of my chairmanship. … It feels great.”
New York University’s Michael Keane, an expert in labor economics and econometrics, also has accepted a senior offer from Yale, but his acceptance came before Pearce became chair this year.
The department also has offers outstanding to Andrew Caplin of NYU, Eduardo Engel of the University of Chile, Nobuhiro Kiyotaki of the London School of Economics, Lars Svensson of Stockholm University in Sweden and Robert Townsend of the University of Chicago.
Caplin’s would be a joint appointment with the School of Management and Engel’s with the Yale Center for International and Area Studies.
“I’m still actively working on all of those,” Pearce said. “I’m very optimistic about one.”
With economics traditionally a male-dominated field, Yale College Dean Richard Brodhead said he is delighted to have a female join Yale’s department.
“Disciplines have opened themselves to the whole range of humanity,” Brodhead said. “[But] it’s of course not only because she is a woman that one is happy.”
Pearce said the presence of a woman is a great benefit to his department.
“There’s been a terrible lack of mentors for women in this profession,” Pearce said. “[Goldberg is] a really strong, independent, original academic. That’s the kind of role model I would want anyone to have.”
Goldberg focuses on the economics of trade policies and globalization, and has done work on the trade liberalization in Latin America and its effects on income distribution.
While Goldberg said she is sad to leave Columbia, she added that she is happy to still be close to New York — “I hope to keep in touch,” she said — and that she feels like, finally, the time is right for her to come to Yale.
“Yale is a great place for me given my interests,” Goldberg said.