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Environmental economics, climate change, natural resource conservation, indicators of sustainable development and country performance, African infrastructure development, priority-setting for country aid allocation
David Wheeler worked at the Center as a senior fellow from 2006 to 2012, primarily on climate policy and information disclosure. During that time he oversaw the creation of two pioneering monitoring tools, Carbon Monitoring for Action (CARMA), an online database showing the locations, estimated C02 emissions, and ownership of 60,000 power plants worldwide; and Forest Monitoring for Action (FORMA) which uses satellite data to generate regularly updated online maps and alerts of tropical forest clearing. CARMA continues to be maintained by CGD, while FORMA was transferred to the World Resources Institute (WRI) to become a key component of Global Forest Watch.
Before joining CGD Wheeler worked for 13 years as lead economist in the World Bank's Development Research Group where he directed a team that worked on environmental policy and research issues in collaboration with policymakers and academics in Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, China, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Ghana and other developing countries. His team focused particularly on reducing pollution through public information disclosure, in collaboration with the environment ministries of China, Indonesia and the Philippines. He also worked on priority-setting for country lending, grants and technical assistance.
After completing his PhD in 1974, Wheeler taught economics for two years at the National University of Zaire in Kinshasa. He joined the economics faculty at Boston University in 1976, and taught there until he joined the World Bank in 1990. While on the BU faculty, he was a visiting professor in MIT's Department of Urban Studies and Planning (1978-79), a co-founder and principal of the Boston Institute for Developing Economies (1987-1990), and Jakarta field director of the Development Studies Project for BAPPENAS, Indonesia's Planning Ministry (1987-1989).
"Disclosure Strategies for Pollution Control," 2005, in The International Yearbook of Environmental and Resource Economics 2005/2006: A Survey of Current Issues (New Horizons in Environmental Economics), Tom Tietenberg and Henk Folmer (eds.) (Cheltenham, U.K.: Edward Elgar) (with Susmita Dasgupta and Hua Wang).
"Can China Grow and Safeguard Its Environment? The Case of Industrial Pollution," 2003, in N. Hope (ed.), Policy Reform in China, (Stanford: Stanford University Press) (with Hua Wang and Susmita Dasgupta).
"Minute Particles, Major Problems: Cleaning the Air in Developing Countries," 2001, Forum For Applied Research and Public Policy, Vol. 16, No. 3, Fall (with Katherine Bolt, Susmita Dasgupta and Kiran Pandey).
This paper introduces and illustrates fCPR (Forest Conservation Performance Rating), a system of color-coded ratings for tropical forest conservation performance that can be implemented for local areas, countries, regions, and the entire pan-tropics.
The resignation of Paul Wolfowitz has sparked a global debate about the choice of the next World Bank president. To help inform this debate, CGD has launched an online survey of views on the selection process, the desired qualifications, and perceptions of the qualifications of some of the possible candidates mentioned in press reports. Learn more and take the survey!
CGD's online survey of views on selecting the World Bank's next president received nearly 700 responses from people representing 71 nations; all world regions; high-, middle- and low-income countries; a variety of professional affiliations; and all adult age groups. In a new working paper analyzing evidence from the survey, CGD senior fellow David Wheeler finds that despite the participants' diversity, they displayed striking uniformity in their preference for an open, competitive selection process, their weighting of selection criteria, and their assessment of potential candidates for president of the World Bank--including the U.S. nominee, Robert Zoellick.
After rejecting emissions caps, India seems poised to curb greenhouse gases on its own. Senior fellow David Wheeler calculates that a proposed new renewable energy standard would cause a massive shift of new power capacity within a decade.