Robert Litan

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Robert Litan

Visiting Senior Policy Scholar

Ph.D., Economics, Yale University

Research Interests

  • Regulation
  • Antitrust
  • ​Finance


Robert Litan is a visiting senior policy scholar at the Georgetown Center for Business and Public Policy. He is also a non-resident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, where he formerly was vice president and director of economic studies and a senior fellow; counsel to Korein Tillery, a boutique law firm specializing in complex business litigation based in St. Louis and Chicago; and a columnist on sports law and economics for The Athletic.

As an economist and attorney, Litan has had nearly four decades of experience in the worlds of the law, economic research, and policy, and as an executive in both the private, public, and government sectors. Through his extensive publications and many speeches and testimony, he has become a widely recognized national expert in regulation, antitrust, and finance, among other policy subjects.

In 1993, he was appointed principal deputy assistant attorney general in the antitrust division of the Justice Department, where he oversaw civil non-merger litigation and the department’s positions on regulatory matters, primarily in telecommunications. In 1995, he was appointed associate director of the Office of Management and Budget, where he oversaw the budgets of five cabinet-level agencies. He later was a consultant to the Department of Treasury on financial modernization and the effectiveness of the Community Reinvestment Act and co-authored several reports on these subjects. In the early 1990s, he served as a member of the Presidential-Congressional Commission on the Causes of the Savings and Loan Crisis. He has chaired two panels of two studies for the National Academy of Sciences, and has served on one other NAS Committee. He began his career as a staff economist at the President’s Council of Economic Advisers.

Litan also has been vice president and director of research at the Kauffman Foundation, and director of research at Bloomberg Government, the subsidiary of Bloomberg LLP that provides analysis and data on the impact of government policies on business. He is currently on the research advisory boards of the Smith Richardson Foundation and the Committee for Economic Development. He also been a member of the international advisory board of the Principal Financial Group.

During his research career, Litan has authored or co-authored more than 25 books and edited another 14, and authored or co-authored more than articles in professional and popular publications. His latest books include The Trillion Dollar Economists (Wiley Press, 2014); The Need for Speed (Brookings Institution Press, 2013, co-authored with Hal Singer); Better Capitalism, co-authored with Carl Schramm, published by the Yale University Press in 2102, and Good CapitalismBad Capitalism (co-authored with William Baumol and Carl Schramm), also published by Yale in 2007, and which is used widely in college courses, and has been translated into 10 languages.

Litan earned his B.S. in economics (summa cum laude) at the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania; his J.D. at Yale Law School; and his M. Phil. and Ph.D. at Yale University.