Economist Carlos Vegh receives Latin America's most prestigious academic award

Plus, recent honors for Carter Malkasian, Mary Sarotte, and others

Carlos A. Vegh, the Fred H. Sanderson Professor of International Economics, is the 2021 recipient of the Latin American and Caribbean Economic Association's Carlos Diaz-Alejandro Prize, considered the most prestigious academic award in Latin America. The LACEA, an international association of economists with common research interests in Latin America, established the biennial award to encourage high-quality research on economic issues relevant to the Latin American region and to honor the memory and contribution of Carlos F. Diaz-Alejandro, a renowned specialist in Latin American economics.

The LACEA selected Vegh as the 11th recipient of the award on the basis of his extensive research on topics related to Latin American and Caribbean macroeconomics, such as hyperinflation, balance of payment crises, currency substitution, fiscal policy, and exchange rate policy. Additionally, the LACEA considered Vegh's contribution to the public good and his time serving as an editor for top journals in development and international economics and as a mentor to many students and junior faculty.

Mikaela Yuchen Wang is one of 151 young leaders from 33 countries and 106 universities named to the seventh cohort of Schwarzman Scholars, a prestigious graduate fellowship program located at Tsinghua University's Schwarzman College in Beijing.

Wang, currently enrolled in the Johns Hopkins SAIS–Tsinghua dual degree program, was chosen from among nearly 3,000 applicants for the Schwarzman Scholars Class of 2023 on the basis of her leadership potential, academic ability, and strength of character. In August, she will start a one-year master's degree program in global affairs that includes intensive study and cultural immersion, being mentored and advised by leaders across sectors; and traveling, while developing a better understanding of China. Wang hopes to further engage with China's financial industry transformations that are paving the way for clean energy transitions.

Aditi Kumar and Caitlin Candee, both graduate students, along with recent alums Julia Fernandes Fonteles and Ruta Karpauskaite, working as a team known as the Power Troupe, won the first AES Energy Innovation Challenge and received a $10,000 prize.

The AES Corp., a global Fortune 500 company working toward smarter, greener energy solutions, sponsored the competition. It consisted of two two-week rounds challenging graduate student teams to create a new product offering aimed at communities with conventional fuel facilities that are being brought offline or decommissioned. The SAIS students focused on decommissioning a Virginia-based coal power plant and replacing the lost capacity with offshore wind facilities; the second phase looked at scaling up their model to markets across Virginia and then to the broader PJM Interconnection markets on the East Coast.

Carter Malkasian, an adjunct lecturer of strategic studies, and Mary Sarotte, the Marie-Josée and Henry R. Kravis Distinguished Professor of Historical Studies, authored books that were included in Foreign Affairs' Best of Books 2021.

Malkasian's book, The American War in Afghanistan: A History, details the full history of the conflict from 2001 to 2020, including the political, cultural, strategic, and tactical aspects of the war. Sarotte, in Not One Inch: America, Russia, and the Making of Post–Cold War Stalemate, shows how the U.S. endured Russian resistance in the 1990s to expand NATO but ultimately undermined a potentially lasting partnership.

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