The WISE Prize for Education


Prof. Jeffrey Sachs

Position: Director of The Earth Institute
Country: United States of America
Jeffrey D. Sachs is the Director of The Earth Institute, Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development, and Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University.  He is also Special Advisor to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. From 2002 to 2006, he was Director of the UN Millennium Project and Special Advisor to United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the internationally agreed goals to reduce extreme poverty, disease, and hunger by the year 2015.  Sachs is also President and Co-Founder of Millennium Promise Alliance, a nonprofit organization aimed at ending extreme global poverty. He directs the Millennium Villages Project, which was launched in 2005/06 in order to create a pathway to achieve the MDGs in the poorest regions of rural Africa, and is unique as Africa’s largest systematic and scientific effort to achieve the MDGs. 

Professor Sachs is widely considered to be the leading international economic advisor of his generation. For more than 20 years he has been in the forefront of the challenges of economic development, poverty alleviation, and enlightened globalization, promoting policies to help all parts of the world to benefit from expanding economic opportunities and wellbeing.  He is also one of the leading voices for combining economic development with environmental sustainability and, as Director of the Earth Institute, leads large-scale efforts to promote the mitigation of human-induced climate change.

He is the author of hundreds of scholarly articles and many books, including the New York Times bestsellers The End of Poverty (Penguin, 2005), Common Wealth: Economics for a Crowded Planet (Penguin, 2008), and The Price of Civilization(Random House, 2011). A native of Detroit, Michigan, Sachs received his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees at Harvard University, where he was the Director of the Center for International Development.