People / Staff

Michael Mandel

Dr. Michael Mandel is chief economic strategist at the Progressive Policy Institute in Washington, where he supervises PPI’s research and policy work across a wide range of topics, including the data-driven economy, the impact of regulation on innovation, and policies to improve production, investment and job growth in the United States and globally. Mandel was co-principal investigator for a Sloan Foundation grant on “Measuring the Impact of Globalization.” Mandel has testified before Congress on impact of regulation on innovation.

Mandel also holds an appointment as senior fellow at Wharton’s Mack Institute for Innovation Management at the University of Pennsylvania, and serves as president and founder of South Mountain Economics LLC, which provides expertise on emerging occupations and emerging industries.  South Mountain Economics is best known for its research reports on the App Economy, which have been cited in a recent White House report, and publications such as the New York Times, Bloomberg, Boston Globe, the Financial Times, the Atlantic, Time, and Forbes.

Mandel received a Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University and formerly served as chief economist at BusinessWeek, where he directed the magazine’s coverage of the domestic and global economies. While at BusinessWeek, Michael was named one of the top 100 business journalists of the 20th century for his writings on innovation and growth. He received multiple awards for his work, including the Gerald Loeb Award for Business and Financial Journalism.  He is the author of four books including Rational Exuberance: Silencing the Enemies of Growth and Why the Future Is Better Than You Think. He is currently revising the third edition of his introductory economics textbook, Economics:The Basics.

Writings

Publications

By and / 2.12.2019

Starting a new business is hard. Scaling it up to a significant size is harder. Europeans have long fretted about their lack of ‘unicorns’— privately held startups with a valuation of more than $1 billion. More generally, there is a sense that European startups either fail to grow or are bought out by larger companies […]

Publications

By and / 2.6.2019

Despite the low unemployment rate, productivity growth is still stuck in slow gear. Non-farm business output per hour increased by 1.3 percent from the third quarter of 2017 to the third quarter of 2018 – well below the post- war average of 2.2 percent.1 Other countries around the world are also grappling with this slowdown […]

Blog

By / 2.1.2019

The GDPR will mean big changes in the way that European and U.S. companies do business in Europe. As we noted at a recent privacy panel, rather than being a matter of speculation, its economic impact has become an empirical question. Will the tighter privacy protections of the GDP slow growth and innovation, as skeptics […]

Publications

By / 1.24.2019

The number of large U.S. manufacturing facilities has dropped by more than a third since 2000, devastating many communities where factories were the lifeblood of the local economy. One promising way to revive America’s manufacturing might is not by going big but by going small – and going local. Digitally-assisted manufacturing technologies, such as 3D […]

Op-eds and Articles

By / 1.4.2019

The big tech platforms get all the attention these days. But the biggest tech news of 2019 may turn out to be the rise of the manufacturing platforms—companies that rewrite the rules of production and product development, and in the process create new opportunities for local manufacturing. The economic backdrop is the looming threat of […]

Blog

By / 12.17.2018

A version of this post originally appeared on Forbes.com Can digitizing the food manufacturing industry help boost living standards? The short answer is yes, if we link food manufacturing into the Internet of Goods. We’re used to thinking of food as cheap and getting cheaper. In 1947, spending on food—both in and out of the home—accounted for 27% […]

Blog

By / 12.3.2018

Here’s what you need to know. Between 2000 and 2017, the price of food went up by 41%, according to the BEA. The price of Internet access fell by 21%. Which change is more harmful to consumers? Oh, yes, and food at home accounts for 6% of household spending, while Internet access accounts for 0.6%. […]

Publications

By / 11.29.2018

The U.S. economy almost certainly has a problem with rising market power. A bevy of recent economic studies show that concentration in many sectors of the economy has increased over the past 20-30 years. These increases in concentration have been convincingly linked to such economic ills as rising prices, weak productivity growth, stagnant real wages, […]

Op-eds and Articles

By / 11.5.2018

Manufacturing is going digital—but it isn’t easy. Domestic manufacturers employ 150,000 software developers and programmers, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Seems like a hefty number, right? But 120,000 of those tech experts, or 80%, are concentrated in only two industries: computer and electronics manufacturing; and transportation equipment.  These are also the industries that have […]

Publications

By / 10.17.2018

As of March 2019, the United Kingdom will have the status of a “third country” from the perspective of the European Union and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Will the EU accept that UK data protection standards are high enough to grant them the status of “adequacy,” which will allow data to flow more […]