Ann Pettifor

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Ann Pettifor (left) and Jonathan Draper in York Minster in 2000

Ann Pettifor is a UK-based economist, director of Policy Research in Macroeconomics (PRIME), an honorary research fellow at the Political Economy Research Centre at City University, London (CITYPERC) and a fellow of the New Economics Foundation, London. She is also executive director of the consultancy Advocacy International, which advises governments and organisations on international finance and sustainable development.

She is best known for correctly predicting the Global Financial Crises in several publications including "Coming soon: The new poor”[1] and her 2006 publication "The coming first world debt crisis" (Palgrave Macmillan).

Pettifor's background is in sovereign debt. She was one of the leaders in the Jubilee 2000 debt campaign, which succeeded in writing off $100 billion of debts (in nominal terms) owed by 35 of the poorest countries.


Born in South Africa, Pettifor graduated with a degree in politics and economics from the University of the Witwatersrand.[2] In the 1980s she held several posts as adviser to the leader of the Greater London Council, Ken Livingstone, and the leader of the Inner London Education Authority, Frances Morrell. She also advised the Right Hon. Margaret Beckett MP who went on to serve in the 1997 Labour government and has also worked as a lobbyist for Ian Greer Associates.

Pettifor co-founded the Jubilee 2000 worldwide campaign for the cancellation of the debts of the poorest countries. In 1998 Jubilee 2000 organised a human chain of approximately 70,000 people, which surrounded the 1998 G8 summit in Birmingham, United Kingdom.[2] In 1999 at the Cologne G8 Summit the G8 agreed to write off approximately $100 billion of third world debt, in large part due to the campaign, which had supporters such as Pope John Paul II, Muhammad Ali, Bono, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and Bill Clinton.[3]

At the conclusion of the Jubilee 2000 campaign Pettifor joined the New Economics Foundation in London where she headed their research unit on global macro-economics.

She subsequently set up Advocacy International, a UK-based consultancy that advises governments and international organisations and serves as its executive director,[4] and has helped secure debt relief for the governments of Guyana, Nigeria, and Ethiopia.[3] Advocacy International also works with local authorities, trades unions, governments, NGOs and charities. Their concerns are wide-ranging: AIDS, maternal survival; enhancing local government; the financial crisis; employment; public services; climate change; energy security – as well as sovereign debt.

Since 2007 Ann Pettifor has been part of the Green New Deal Group, which advocates the environmental transformation of the economy. The group put forward plans to invest in green energy, provide greater regulation of the finance sector and strengthen ties between environmentalists, industry, agriculture, and trade unions. The proposals were put forth in response to fears over the recession, climate change and increasing energy prices, stressing the need for integrated policies tackling all three.

In the 2010 general election Pettifor attempted to stand for Parliament as a Labour candidate and was shortlisted in the North West Durham selection process but lost to Pat Glass.[5]

On September 27, 2015, it was announced that she had been appointed to the British Labour Party's Economic Advisory Committee, convened by Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell and reporting to Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn,[6] regarding which she stated that she was honoured to be asked to serve with such distinguished colleagues and that she hoped to play her part in overturning the Chancellor’s deficit fetishism, and his employment of it as a smokescreen for an attack on the state.[7]

Awards and honours[edit]

Among the awards and honours she has received are an honorary doctorate from the University of Newcastle (2000), the Pax Christi International Peace Prize and the Freedom of the City of Callao. In 2003 President Obasanjo honoured her work on behalf of African governments by bestowing the Order of the Niger on her.[8]



  1. ^ “Coming soon: The new poor” (The New Statesman 2003)
  2. ^ a b "Ann Pettifor". Helsinki Process. Archived from the original on 6 July 2007. Retrieved 27 May 2007. 
  3. ^ a b "Our Advocacy". Advocacy International. Archived from the original on 16 May 2007. Retrieved 28 May 2007. 
  4. ^ "Ann Pettifor". Advocacy International. Archived from the original on 6 February 2007. Retrieved 28 May 2007. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Labour announces new Economic Advisory Committee". Labour Press. 27 September 2015. Retrieved 11 March 2016. 
  7. ^ Smith, Jeremy (27 September 2015). "Ann Pettifor invited to join Labour Leader's new Economic Advisory Committee". Prime. Retrieved 11 March 2016. 
  8. ^ "Storm of Hope Speakers". Christian Ecology Link. Archived from the original on 28 June 2007. Retrieved 28 May 2007. 
  9. ^ a b c "Ann Pettifor". Carnegie Council. 6 September 2001. Retrieved 28 May 2007. 

External links[edit]