Person:
Gatti, Roberta

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Labor Economics, Political Economy, Social Inclusion, Economic Growth
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Last updated: April 14, 2024
Biography
Roberta Gatti is the Chief Economist of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region of the World Bank. In that role, she oversees analytical work to support the Bank’s operations and economic surveillance in countries in the region. In her previous capacity of Chief Economist for the Human Development practice group, she co-led the conceptualization and release of the World Bank Human Capital Index and oversaw the Service Delivery Indicators data initiative. Roberta joined the World Bank in 1998 as a Young Professional in the Macro unit of the Development Research Group. She has since led analytical agendas on growth, firm productivity, gender, social inclusion and labor markets, including as the Global Lead for Labor policies. She has also managed teams and lending portfolios in both the MENA and the Europe and Central Asia regions. Roberta’s research is published in top field journals such as the Journal of Public Economics, the Journal of Economic Growth, and the Journal of Development Economics. Roberta is also the author of numerous flagship reports, including Jobs for Shared Prosperity: Time for Action in the Middle East and North Africa; Being Fair, Faring Better: Promoting Equality of Opportunity for Marginalized Roma; The Human Capital Project; and The Human Capital Index 2020 Update: Human Capital in the Time of COVID-19. Roberta holds a B.A. from Università Bocconi and a Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University. She has taught at Georgetown and Johns Hopkins Universities.

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  • Publication
    Does Access to Credit Improve Productivity? Evidence from Bulgarian Firms
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2006-05) Gatti, Roberta
    Although it is widely accepted that financial development is associated with higher growth, the evidence on the channels through which credit affects growth on the micro-level is scant. Using data from a cross section of Bulgarian firms, the authors estimate the impact of access to credit (as proxied by indicators of whether firms have access to a credit or overdraft facility) on productivity. To overcome potential omitted variable bias of OLS estimates, they use information on firms' past growth to instrument for access to credit. The authors find credit to be positively and strongly associated with total factor productivity. These results are robust to a wide range of robustness checks.