Last updated on: 9/24/2013 | Author:

Michael Greenstone, PhD Biography

3M Professor of Environmental Economics at MIT
Not Clearly Pro or Con to the question "Should the Government Allow a Path to Citizenship for Undocumented Immigrants?"

“There are many different approaches to comprehensive immigration reform, including several fresh ideas being proposed by the President and congressional leaders. One innovative approach that could provide important principles for lawmakers can be found in a Hamilton Project discussion paper, “Rationalizing U.S. Immigration Policy: Reforms for Simplicity, Fairness, and Economic Growth,” by economist Giovanni Peri of UC Davis. In his proposal, Peri offers an incremental, market-based approach to comprehensive reform. Peri proposes starting with market-based changes to employment-based visas to better link visas with labor-market demand.

The proposed system uses market-based auctions to allocate employment-based permits to employers and visas to immigrants that have the greatest propensity to contribute to economic activity and thus to generate the largest benefits for the U.S. economy. These auctions would also generate revenue for the federal government. Policymakers, in turn, could use that revenue for a host of purposes—to tackle the federal deficit, compensate local communities that deliver social services to immigrants, or to invest in the skills of American workers.”

Co-written with Adam Looney, “The Economics of Immigration Reform,”, Jan. 29, 2013

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Faculty Director, E2e Project, 2013-present
  • Co-Director, Climate Change Environment and Natural Resources Research Programme, International Growth Centre, 2010-present
  • Board of Directors and Head, Environment of Energy Program, Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), 2010-present
  • Senion Fellow, Brookings Institution, 2010-present
  • Director, The Hamilton Project, 2010-summer 2013
  • Chief Economist, Council of Economic Advisors, 2009-2010
  • Member, Energy Council, MIT Energy Initiative, 2008-present
  • Member, Environmental Research Council, MIT, 2008-present
  • Member, Advisory Board, Ed Labs, 2008-present
  • Nonresident Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution, 2007-2009
  • 3M Professor of Environmental Economics, MIT, 2006-present
  • Member, Member, Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab, 2006-present
  • Fellow, Center for the Study of Poverty and Inequality at Stanford University, 2006-present
  • Visiting Professor, University of California Energy Institute and University of California at Berkeley, 2006-2007
  • Visiting Professor, University of California Berkeley and Stanford University, 2005-2006
  • PhD, Economics, Princeton University, 1998
  • BA, with high honors, Economics, Swarthmore College, 1991
  • Research Associate, National Bureau of Economic Research, 2003-present
  • 3M Associate Professor of Economic, MIT, 2003-2006
  • Research Fellow, American Bar Foundation, 2002-2003
  • Research Associate, Center for Integrating Statistical and Environmental Science, University of Chicago, 2001-2003
  • Research Associate, Population Research Center, University of Chicago, 2001-2003
  • Assistant Professor of Economics, University of Chicago, 2000-2003
  • Faculty Research Fellow, National Bureau of Economic Research, 2000-2003
  • Robert Wood Johnson Scholar, University of California Berkeley, 1998-2000
  • Visiting Scholar, Center for Labor Economics, University of California at Berkeley, 1998-2000
  • Special Sworn Employee, US Census Bureau, 1996-present
Quoted in:
  1. Do Undocumented Immigrants Pay Their "Fair Share" of Taxes?