Isabella Weber

UMass Assistant Professor Isabella Weber
Assistant Professor
Department of Economics | College of Social & Behavioral Sciences
219 Gordon Hall

2021-22 Scholars Project Title: Export Diversification Across Two Globalizations: A Network Analysis (Co-Scholar Maryclare Griffin)

A long-standing insight in development economics is that higher levels of diversification, are closely linked to higher levels of growth and prosperity. Yet, due to data limitations we know little about how countries’ export diversification evolves in the very long-run. Isabella Weber, Assistant Professor of Economics, and collaborators have constructed the first, global database of commodity-level exports for the previous globalization that ended with World War I ( Their analysis establishes strong persistence in export diversification. As ISSR scholars, we propose to develop new statistical tools needed to investigate how in the context of this overall persistence in the country ranking, the global network of exports and the position of countries therein has changed over time.  

Selected Publications as of 2021 (see professional website for current work):

  • Weber, I.M. (2021): How China Escaped Shock Therapy: The Market Reform Debate. London, New York: Routledge.
  • Shaikh, A. and I.M. Weber (2020): “The U.S.-China Trade Imbalance and the Theory of Free Trade: Debunking the Currency Manipulation Argument,” International Review of Applied Economics,
  • Weber, I.M. (2020): “Origins of China’s Contested Relation with Neoliberalism: Economics, the World Bank, and Milton Friedman at the Dawn of Reform.” Global Perspectives 1(1), 12271.
  • Weber, I.M., G. Semieniuk, T. Westland and J. Liang (2021). “What You Exported Matters: Persistence in Productive Capabilities across Two Eras of Globalization.” Rebuilding Macroeconomics Working Paper 40, available online: