Ron Smith has been a Professor of Applied Economics at Birkbeck, University of London since 1985. His research interests include econometrics, defence economics and political economy. Research grants include from the ESRC, UN, World Bank & European Central Bank. He is on the editorial boards of Defence and Peace Economics, Journal of Peace Research, Journal of Conflict Resolution, Cambridge Journal of Economics, International Review of Applied Economics and Applied Economics and in the past the Journal of Applied Econometrics.
He served as Economics Department Chair 1988-91 and 1994-97 and Pro-Vice-Master 1998-2003, was Chair of the University of London Higher Degrees Committee for Economics; on ESRC PhD award panel; Advisory Board of the Department of Applied Economics, Cambridge & the ESRC Macroeconomic Modelling Consortium. Associate fellow of the Royal United Services Institute.
He has done consultancy work for a range of bodies including the UK National Audit Office, on defence topics, as an econometric advisor to Frontier Economics since its formation in 1999 and provided expert witness statements to various bodies. He was awarded the 2011 Lewis Fry Richardson lifetime achievement award for contributions to the scientific study of militarised conflict by the European Consortium of Political Research.