Geoffrey Heal

Professor, Columbia Business School

Phone: (212) 854-6459
Geoffrey Heal is Paul Garrett Professor of Public Policy and Corporate responsibility and Professor of Finance and Economics at the Graduate School of Business at Columbia University, Professor in the School of Public and International Affairs, Co-Director of Columbia’s Center for Economy Environment and Society and of the Earth Institute’s Center for Globalization and Sustainable Development. He studied and physics and economics at Churchill College, Cambridge, from which he obtained a first class honors BA and a doctorate. He taught at Cambridge as a Fellow of Christ’s College, and subsequently at Sussex and Essex Universities in the UK, at the Universities of Paris and Stockholm, and in the U.S. at Yale, Stanford and Princeton. Heal is a Director of the Union of Concerned Scientists and was a founder and chairs the board of the Coalition for Rainforest Nations, a group of forested tropical countries that has worked to reform the Kyoto Protocol to provide financial incentives for forest conservation. He was a Commissioner of the Pew Oceans Commission and a member of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board Committee on the Valuing the Preservation of Ecosystem Services. He chaired a Committee of the National Academy of Science on Valuing Ecosystem Services.

Heal was Managing Editor of the Review of Economic Studies, acted as an associate editor of many other journals, and published seventeen books and about two hundred articles. His books include Economic Theory and Exhaustible Resources, Public Policy and the Tax System, The Evolving International Economy, Oil and the International Economy, Topological Social Choice, The Economics of Increasing Returns, Environmental Markets, Valuing the Future, Nature and the Marketplace and When Principles Pay. He acted as Senior Vice Dean of Columbia Business School from 1991 to 1994 and is a Fellow of the Econometric Society and of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, of which he is a Past President and from which he received the 2003 Prize for a Publication of Enduring Quality.

Heal was a founder of a London-based economic consulting company and also of FITEL, a company providing computer-based services to the international securities industry. He has acted as a consultant to the British and American governments, to the World Bank and other international agencies, and to trade unions and major corporations. He is on the Board of Petromin Holdings PNG Ltd, the national oil gas and mineral company of Papua New Guinea.

Heal’s current research interests reach from financial markets, where he studies the role of derivatives and the securitization of catastrophic risks, to environmental conservation, where he studies the use of market-based incentives for conservation of forests and biodiversity. He is particularly interested in the interface between economics and ecology, and the extent to which profit-oriented companies can contribute to the solution of social and environmental problems. Heal’s latest books, Valuing the Future, Nature and the Marketplace and When Principles Pay attempt to develop an economic framework for thinking rigorously about sustainability and the issues for which it has become a metaphor.

Focus: Business, Finance, Security, Trade, United States, Americas


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Last Updated: Mar 13, 2008

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