Dwight H Perkins is the Harold Hitchings Burbank Professor of Political Economy, Emeritus in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University. Previous positions at Harvard include Director of the Harvard University Asia Center, Associate Director of the East Asian (now Fairbank) Research Center, Chair of the Department of Economics, and Director of the Harvard Institute for International Development. Perkins has authored, coauthored, or edited 20 books and numerous articles on economic history and economic development, with special references to the economies of East and Southeast Asia. Topics include the transition from central planning to the market, long-term agricultural development, industry policy, the underlying sources of growth in East Asia, and the role of economic and legal institutions in East Asian growth.
He has served as an advisor or consultant to the governments of Korea, China, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea. He has also been a long-term consultant to the World Bank, the Ford Foundation, and various U.S. government agencies, including the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations. Perkins is a member of the American Philosophical Society. He received his BA from Cornell and his MA and PhD in economics from Harvard.