Matthew Harding, UCI economics professor, has been named a 2021 Faculty Innovation Fellow. The two-year appointment, courtesy of UCI Beall Applied Innovation, acknowledges UCI faculty members who have a rich history of translating their research for wider societal impact. The honor includes a research stipend and opportunities to serve as an entrepreneurial advisor and ambassador to others on campus.

“I recently co-founded the Institute, an international thought forum for providing data-driven evidence and policy recommendations on issues related to fair access and sustainable technology,” says Harding. “This fellowship will enable me to explore ways in which talented young scholars from around the world will engage with researchers and policy makers from different institutions.” In particular, he’s looking forward to structuring opportunities for mentoring and research by students from minority backgrounds.

Harding joined the UCI faculty in 2016 following previous posts at Duke University and Stanford. He’s an econometrician and data scientist who uses Big Data to derive actionable insights into individual consumption and investment decisions in areas such as health, energy, and consumer finance.

He is investigating the implications of recent developments in AI on fairness in credit markets and the broader consequences for the future of work of the penetration of algorithms on high-skill jobs in the financial industry. His work on sustainable finance relates individual consumer behavior to technological innovations, and evaluates the causal impact of public and private funding of new green technologies on the environmental, social and governance practices of firms.

His research has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, U.S. Department of Agriculture, UPS and Microsoft.

Harding received his undergraduate degree from the University College London, his master’s from the University of Oxford, and his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Join UCI Beall Applied Innovation online Jan. 26, 1 p.m., to meet Harding and the 17 other UCI faculty who comprise the second cohort of the Faculty Innovation Fellow program. Register online at


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