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Elizabeth Robinson

Director of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment
London School of Economics and Political Science


Professor Elizabeth Robinson is Director of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at LSE.



Areas of expertise

  • Climate change
  • Health
  • Food security


Professor Elizabeth Robinson is Director of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at LSE. She is an environmental economist with over twenty-five years’ experience addressing the design of policies and institutions to reduce climate change emissions, protect the environment, and improve the livelihoods of resource-dependent communities, particularly in lower-income countries, including six while living in Tanzania and Ghana. Her recent focus includes climate change and systemic risk; and tracking the co-benefits of climate change mitigation and health, oriented particularly around food security and food systems. From 2004-09 she was coordinating lead author for the International Assessment of Agricultural Science and Technology for Development, sub-Saharan Africa; and a Member of the global and sub-Saharan Africa design teams. She was on the UK Defra Economic Advisory Panel for five years; and in 2019-20, Specialist Advisor to the UK House of Lords Select Committee on Food, Poverty, Health, and Environment. She is Working Group 1 lead for the Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change, that addresses climate change impacts, exposures, and vulnerability.

Before joining the Grantham Research Institute, Elizabeth worked at the University of Reading for ten years, and prior to that she has variously worked at the Boston Consulting Group, the World Bank, Rockefeller Foundation, Natural Resources Institute, and as a tutorial fellow in economics at the University of Oxford. In 1990 she was awarded the top first-class degree in Engineering, Economics, and Management, from Oxford University, during which time she was also a varsity athlete (track and field), varsity lightweight rower, and captain of the gymnastics varsity team. She has a PhD in Applied Economics from Stanford University, and received the Outstanding PhD Dissertation Honorable Mention from the American Agricultural Economics Association for the second best agricultural economics dissertation in the US, 1997.

Professor Robinson is a highly sought-after speaker. Within academic circles she has, for example, been invited keynote speaker at the 2022 Australasian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society annual conference; the 2021 African Association of Environmental and Resource Economists (AFAERE) Inaugural Conference; keynote speaker at the 2020 and 2021 Malaysia Launches of the Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change, and the Norway 2019 launch; delivered the 2019 University of Reading Public Lecture, titled Turning up the heat on climate change; keynote speaker at the 2018 Deforestation and Energy Access conference, Essen, Germany; invited panellist at the first "Ocean Risk Summit" Bermuda, in 2018; invited Plenary Speaker for the 2011 Environment for Development Policy Day, Arusha, Tanzania. She has spoken at broad range of other events, including multiple school visits; the annual Legal Geek conference; addressing the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Nutrition for Growth, annual general meeting; CSER Sustainable Finance Global Systemic Risks and Universal Ownership Summit; amongst many others. In the media she has been widely quoted in the New Scientist, the Guardian, the Independent, the Daily Mail, and many other news outlets. She has appeared on BBC News at Six, BBC News at Ten, BBC News 24, Sky News, Al Jazeera Inside Story, and has been heard many times on, for example, BBC Radio 4 including Farming Today and The World Tonight, Times Radio, and BBC regional radio stations around the country.

Types of Engagement


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