Simon Johnson is the Ronald A. Kurtz (1954) Professor of Entrepreneurship at the MIT Sloan School of Management, where he is also head of the Global Economics and Management group. He co-founded and currently leads the popular Global Entrepreneurship Lab (GLAB) course – over the past 20 years. MBA students in GLAB have worked on more than 500 projects with start-up companies around the world.
He is the coauthor, with Jon Gruber, of Jump-Starting America: How Breakthrough Science Can Revive Economic Growth and the American Dream.
From 2012 to 2019, he was a member of the FDIC’s Systemic Resolution Advisory Committee. From July 2014 to 2017, Johnson was a member of the Financial Research Advisory Committee of the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Financial Research (OFR), within which he chaired the Global Vulnerabilities Working Group.
Johnson has been a member of the private sector Systemic Risk Council since it was founded by Sheila Bair in 2012; this group is now chaired by Sir Paul Tucker. From April 2009 to April 2015, he was a member of the Congressional Budget Office's Panel of Economic Advisers. In March 2016, Johnson was the third distinguished visiting fellow at the Central Bank of Barbados.
“For his articulate and outspoken support for public policies to end too-big-to-fail”, Johnson was named a Main Street Hero by the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) in 2013. In April 2015, the Washington Examiner placed Johnson at #11 on their list of New Voices for 2015. In November 2015, Johnson joined the advisory council of Intelligence2 Debates.
Over the past decade, Johnson has published more than 300 high impact pieces in the New York Times, Bloomberg, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, The New Republic, BusinessWeek, The Huffington Post, The Financial Times, and Project Syndicate.
“The Quiet Coup” received over a million views when it appeared in The Atlantic in early 2009. His book 13 Bankers: the Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown (with James Kwak), was an immediate bestseller and has become one of the mostly highly regarded books on the financial crisis. Their follow-up book on U.S. fiscal policy, White House Burning: The Founding Fathers, Our National Debt, and Why It Matters for You, won praise across the political spectrum. Johnson’s academic research on economic development, corporate finance, and political economy is widely cited.
From March 2007 through the end of August 2008, Johnson was the International Monetary Fund's Economic Counsellor (chief economist) and Director of its Research Department. He also helped to found and run the NBER Africa Project; four volumes were published by the University of Chicago Press in 2016.
Johnson holds a BA in economics and politics from the University of Oxford, an MA in economics from the University of Manchester, and a PhD in economics from MIT.
Michellana Jester is a Lecturer in the Global Economics and Management Group at MIT Sloan School of Management (Cambridge, Massachusetts). Michellana designs innovative and impactful learning experiences to assist learners to advance their personal and professional goals, as well as advance the strategic goals of their organization. With more than two decades of experience in strategic management consulting, organizational and leadership development, Michellana has worked with a variety of organizations - from corporations to higher education- to face complex challenges and move to action.
Michellana has written and presented her research on adult learning, human resource and organizational development in a variety of forums including the Academy of Management; and she has been featured in Financial Times, Fast Company, The Smart Manager, BizEd Magazine, and Psychology Today. In addition to completing certificate programs from Yale School of Management, University of Chicago’s Booth School of Management, IDEO and the Institute for Experiential Learning, Michellana holds a Doctorate degree from Columbia University and a Master’s degree from Harvard University.