About Raaj Sah

Raaj Sah is professor at the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy and the College, and an associated faculty member in the Department of Economics. He has previously taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Yale University, Princeton University, and the University of Pennsylvania. He received a PhD in economics from the University of Pennsylvania, and an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.

He has written on the nature and consequences of human fallibility. His work in this area has been applied in many different contexts, including the architecture of organizations, comparison of alternative economic systems, decentralization of leadership and authority, and several branches of management sciences.

A long-term research interest of Sah is taxation and public finance. In this area he has studied several themes, one being the conflicts over resources that arise in the process of societal modernization. Such conflicts include those between rural and urban populations, which are seen in many of today's poorer countries. Some of this research is presented in the book Peasants Versus City-Dwellers, written jointly with Joseph Stiglitz (Oxford paperback, 2002).

He has written on a number of other topics, including social osmosis. This deals with how people form their perceptions of current social realities and how these perceptions shape future realities, often leading to outcomes quite different from those predicted by conventional economic approaches. He has applied this perspective to the study of the large differences in the levels of crime and corruption observed between various societies.

Sah has advised many financial institutions and governments. He has received several honors for his teaching, including three at the University of Chicago.