The Macroeconomic Policy Program sponsors research and public discussions on topics of current interest in macroeconomics, including the determinants of economic growth, explanations for recession and recovery, and the link between financial markets and economic performance.
The program is directed by Professor Steven Fazzari, Bert A. and Jeanette L. Lynch Distinguished Professor of Economics at Washington University in St. Louis; Chair of the Department of Sociology; and Associate Director of the Weidenbaum Center.. The current focus of the program's activities is the crisis in the U.S. financial markets and fiscal policy. The Program's research on causes and consequences of household debt growth cluminated in a publication by Professor Fazzari, After the Great Recession: The Struggle for Economic Recovery and Growth, published by Cambridge University Press (co-edited with Barry Cynamon and Mark Setterfeld). Professor Fazzari and the research team continued to study how spending decisions by households, firms, and governments affect growth in developed economies. To this end, the "Muddy Water Macro" website was developed in order to educate the public to better understand macroeconomics and economic policy more generally.
In 2013, Professor Fazzari delivered three related talks open to the University community and the general public as part of the Weidenbaum Center Lecture Series program. The talks were as follows: "The Rising Financial Fragility in the Consumer Age," "Anatomy of a Historic Recession," and "Challenges to Recovery."