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Peter Timmer

Non-Resident Fellow

Development, agricultural economics, rural development, supermarkets


Harvard University (PhD, MA, AB)


Peter Timmer is a non-resident fellow at the Center for Global Development. Now retired from teaching, he is the Thomas D. Cabot Professor of Development Studies, emeritus, at Harvard University. Prior to joining CGD, Timmer was dean of the Graduate School of International Relations and Pacific Studies at UC–San Diego. In addition to his faculty positions in three schools at Harvard, Timmer has also held professorships at Cornell and Stanford. In 1992, he received the Bintang Jasa Utama (Highest Merit Star) from the Republic of Indonesia for his contributions to food security. He served as the chief outside advisor to USAID for developing their strategy on growth and agriculture for the Natsios Report (Foreign Assistance in the National Interest), and he was one of the key advisors for the World Development Report 2008: Agriculture for Development. He currently serves as an advisor to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation on agricultural development and food security issues.

Timmer's work focuses on four broad topics: the nature of "pro-poor growth" and its application in Indonesia and other countries in Asia; the supermarket revolution in developing countries and its impact on the poor (both producers and consumers); the structural transformation in historical perspective as a framework for understanding the political economy of agricultural policy, and the functioning of the world rice market.

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