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Interview with Takatoshi Ito

Takatoshi Ito

Professor, National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (at Roppongi); Project Professor, Graduate School of Public Policy, University of Tokyo 
Former Deputy Vice Minister for International Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Japan 


Takatoshi Ito, Professor, National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS), and Project Professor at Graduate School of Public Policy (GraSPP), University of Tokyo, has taught extensively both in the United States and Japan since his finishing Ph.D. in economics at Harvard University in 1979. He taught as Assistant and tenured Associate Professor (1979-88) at University of Minnesota, as Associate and full Professor at Hitotsubashi University (1988-2002), as Professor at the Graduate School of Economics at University of Tokyo (2004-2014) before assuming the current position in 2014. He held visiting professor positions at Harvard University, Stanford University; Columbia Business School, and Tun Ismail Ali Chair Professor at University of Malaya. He has distinguished academic and research appointments such as President of the Japanese Economic Association in 2004; Fellow of Econometric Society, since 1992; Research Associate at National Bureau of Economic Research since 1985; and Faculty Fellow, Centre for Economic Policy Research, since 2006. He was Editor-in-chief of Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, and is Co-Editor of Asian Economic Policy Review.

In an unusual move for a Japanese academic, Ito was also appointed in the official sectors, as Senior Advisor in the Research Department, International Monetary Fund (1994-97) and as Deputy Vice Minister for International Affairs at Ministry of Finance, Japan (1999-2001). He served as a member of the Prime Minister’s Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy (2006-2008). In 2010, he was a co-author of a commissioned study of the Bank of Thailand 10-th year review of inflation targeting regime.

He contributes frequently op-ed columns and articles to Financial Times and Nihon Keizai Shinbun . He is an author of many books including The Japanese Economy (MIT Press, 1992), The Political Economy of the Japanese Monetary Policy (1997) and Financial Policy and Central Banking in Japan (2000) (both with T. Cargill and M. Hutchison, MIT Press), An Independent and Accountable IMF (with J. De Gregorio, B. Eichengreen, and C. Wyplosz, 1999), and more than 130 academic (refereed) journal articles, including Econometrica , American Economic Review , and Journal of Monetary Economics , and chapters in books on international finance, monetary policy,and the Japanese economy. His research interest includes capital flows and currency crises,microstructures of the foreign exchange rates, and inflation targeting. The National Medal with Purple Ribbon was awarded in June 2011 for his excellent academic achievement.