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School of Economics is proud to welcome new Head of School, Professor Paola Manzini

23 September 2021

The School of Economics is delighted to announce the start of Professor Paola Manzini’s role as Head of School.

Professor Manzini is a distinguished economist and academic whose research interests lie in the mathematical modelling of human decisions and interactions in possibly conflictual strategic situations (i.e. game theory). Having joined the University of Bristol earlier in 2021, Professor Manzini takes on the role of Head of School, having worked at the University of Sussex (as Head of the Economics Department), the University of St Andrews and Queen Mary (University of London).

Professor Sarah Smith concluded her term as Head of School in September and will has led Economics for the past seven years.  In that time she has transitioned the former Department of Economics into a School in its own right. Under her leadership the School has modernised the economics curriculum at Bristol, ensuring that units on data skills and behavioural economics, for example, have been incorporated and taught widely to undergraduate students.  Sarah has championed female participation and uptake in the field of economics and chaired the Royal Economic Society’s Women’s Committee, as well as having a key role in the campaign, ‘Discover Economics', which aims to broaden the appeal of economics, change perceptions and attract more students from under-represented groups.   

Sarah will remain a valuable member of our School community and will be continuing her research/focusing her time on researching on Public Policy and Applied Microeconomics.

The School of Economics is one of the top economics departments in the UK; THE analysis of the Research Excellence Framework (2014) showed that economics at Bristol ranks sixth overall for research impact.

Economics has a strong tradition at Bristol, dating back to Alfred Marshall who was the first Principal at University College Bristol (which later became the University of Bristol). Marshall’s wife, Mary Paley, was also one of the first female lecturers at Bristol. As the world starts to pivot to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, the strong tradition of economics at Bristol, researching and understanding real-world issues and equipping successful graduates for the workplace, has never been more important. Professor Manzini will lead a team of over 65 academic staff undertaking world-class research in key areas such as health, climate change and inequality (amongst others) and will be keen to reinforce the School’s global reach and influence. She will oversee and ensure continued teaching excellence through the School’s diverse international cohort of academics, teaching students from over 60 countries, the move to a more blended way of learning through the continued incorporation and championing of digital resources, and the development of academic staff on various recognised teaching pathways.

On behalf of the students and staff within the School of Economics, we would like to thank Professor Sarah Smith for her outstanding leadership and offer a very warm welcome to Professor Paola Manzini, whom we wish every success in the role.

Further information

Find out more about our courses and programmes.

Discover our research and find out more about our academics on our website.

Read more about Professor Manzini's research in her academic profile.

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