Economics alumnus named top economist in the Philippines

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Denise Konan, (808) 956-6570
Dean , College of Social Sciences
Posted: Jun 1, 2012

Dr. Arsenio Balisacan
Dr. Arsenio Balisacan
Arsenio M. Balisacan, who earned his PhD in Economics from UH Mānoa in 1985, has been appointed by President Noynoy Aquino of the Philippines as his administration’s Socioeconomic Planning Secretary and Director-General of the National Economic and Development Authority.  
Balisacan will concurrently chair the National Statistical Coordination Board, Philippine Institute for Development Studies and Philippine Center for Economic Development.
At the time of appointment, he was serving as Dean of the University of the Philippines School of Economics in Quezon City. He was previously honored as Academician of the Philippines’ National Academy of Science and Technology.

Balisacan is acknowledged as both a leading expert on poverty in Asia and developing economies in Southeast Asia. He is the author or co-editor of seven books and has published about 100 academic papers and book chapters.
In 1985, his PhD dissertation at UH Mānoa, titled “Economic Protection: Agricultural Policies in Developed and Developing Countries,” pioneered the political economy of agricultural policies. His doctoral adviser was Economics Professor James Roumasset.
“Dr. Balisacan is a true leader and scholar, both in moving the research frontier forward and putting his expertise on rural poverty into practice for the betterment of the people of the Philippines,” said Denise Konan, UH Mānoa Dean of the College of Social Sciences and a Professor in the Department of Economics.
As Director-Chief Executive of the Southeast Asian Regional Centre for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture from 2003-09, he spearheaded a memorandum of understanding with UH Mānoa leading to a book on “Sustainability Science.”  As Undersecretary of the Department of Agriculture in the Philippines in 2000, 2001 and 2003, he was the country’s chief negotiator in the Agriculture Negotiations of the World Trade Organization and involved in various bilateral agriculture negotiations.
See the College of Social Sciences website at