Professorial Fellow, Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (UNU-MERIT), United Nations University

I am Professorial Fellow at UNU-MERIT, the Netherlands, Visiting Professor at RWTH Aachen University in Technology, Innovation, Marketing and Entrepreneurship and Research Fellow at the IZA Institute of Labor Economics, Germany. I am also a Fellow of Leiden University's Africa Studies Centre and Research Affiliate at the International Security and Development Centre in Berlin. My research is broadly concerned with entrepreneurship, innovation and technology in economic development, and how this is mediated by institutions, trade, geography and human nature. I have been expert advisor to virtually all the global development organisations - most recently for the World Trade Organisation’s World Trade Report on Digitisation and Trade (2018).

Currently I am working on the relationships between technology (in particularly AI) on development, growth and security - and its implications for governance; on the nature and consequences of what has been called the 4th Industrial Revolution, especially for catching-up economies; and on the decline in entrepreneurship and innovation in advanced economies.


  • 2011–present
    Professorial Fellow, United Nations University (UNU-MERIT)
  • 2018–present
    Visiting Professor, RWTH Aachen University
  • 2018–present
    Fellow, Leiden University, Africa Studies Centre
  • 2013–present
    Research Fellow, IZA Institute of Labor Economics
  • 2018–2019
    Academic Visitor, Said Business School, University of Oxford
  • 2011–2019
    Professor, Maastricht University
  • 2012–2013
    Affiliated Professor, CENTRUM Graduate Business School, Peru
  • 2007–2011
    Senior Research Fellow, United Nations University (UNU-WIDER)
  • 1996–2006
    Professor, North-West University, South Africa
  • 1994–1996
    Lecturer, University of Oxford