The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

Andrew Samwick

Letter From Andrew Samwick

     I came to Dartmouth 25 years ago because it aspires to be the best of both worlds: a major research university that pushes the frontiers of knowledge and a small liberal arts college that focuses on the education of undergraduates. I am honored and grateful to have had the opportunity over the last 15 years to serve as director of the Rockefeller Center and, along with a talented and dedicated team of faculty and staff, make the Center an integral part of Dartmouth’s aspiration. In 2012, when the College’s Strategic Planning Working Group on Pedagogy, Teaching, and Mentorship recommended creating “multidisciplinary centers to facilitate faculty-faculty and faculty-student interaction across departments and schools outside of the classroom,” it singled out the Rockefeller Center as “an example of a successful model that should be replicated for other disciplines.”

Andrew Samwick Reflects on Time as Head of Rockefeller Center

When asked about his guiding principle as director of the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy, Andrew Samwick reaches for a piece of paper stuck to the top edge of his computer screen.

“Oh, I can’t take it off, but that’s it,” he says, pointing to the note. “ ‘Educating, training, and inspiring the next generation of public policy leaders.’ And the fact that it seems to be stuck means I’m just going to leave it here for my successor.”

Samwick, the Sandra L. and Arthur L. Irving ’72a P’10 Professor of Economics, concluded his 15-year tenure as the center’s director last week. He joined the faculty in the Department of Economics in 1994 and was named director of the center in 2004. He plans to return to teaching and research. The search for the next director is underway.

Andrew Samwick Honored for Fifteen Years of Leadership as Director of the Center

Andrew Samwick, the Sandra L. and Arthur L. Irving ’72a P ’10 Professor of Economics, was honored at the Rockefeller Center Board of Visitors dinner on May 9, 2019 for his 15 years of leadership as director of the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences. Samwick’s term as director ends on June 30, 2019. 

Cheryl Bascomb ’82, Vice President of Alumni Relations, began the evening’s program by recognizing the 250thAnniversary of Dartmouth and the Call to Lead Campaign, and encouraged alumni to participate in the Call to Serve activities. She also thanked Samwick for his contributions to the Rockefeller Center. 

The next honor was from the Class of 1964, who presented Samwick with the Class of 1964 Outstanding Leadership Award for his work as director since 2004. The Class had adopted Samwick as a member of their class on the occasion of their 50threunion. They established the Outstanding Leadership Award at that time –June 2014 –to honor those who share the class’s belief in the importance of developing young leaders to take on today’s challenges. Samwick is the fifth recipient of the Award. 

Rocky Hosts a Student and Alumni Reception in Boston

The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center hosted a Student and Alumni Reception in Boston, MA on Saturday, February 24, 2018. The occasion provided an opportunity for area alumni to meet the current cohort of Rockefeller Global Leadership Program (RGLP) participants, who were in Boston for their off-campus cultural immersion experience.

“RGLP intentionally prepares students to be comfortable in situations and cultural circumstances unfamiliar to them and how to communicate effectively across cultural barriers,” says Sadhana Hall, Deputy Director.

Rockefeller Center Director, Andrew Samwick, attended the reception along with Deputy Director Sadhana Hall, Professor Herschel Nachlis, and Program Officer Tatyana Gao.

In addition to those students involved with the Rockefeller Global Leadership Program, the reception welcomed Dartmouth students currently interning in Boston and area alumni and friends with a connection to the Center.

The reception took place at Legal’s Harborside Restaurant. Over sixty guests were in attendance.

Dartmouth Experts Discuss the New Administration

The following is an excerpt from a January 10th Dartmouth Now article.

Dartmouth is convening a week of panel discussions leading up to inauguration day that will feature the College’s leading voices on education, immigration, the budget, terrorism, trade, health care, and energy policy, addressing the “Opportunities and Risks” of a Trump presidency.

The panels are organized by four major themes—domestic issues, global issues, health policy, and energy and the environment—to run over four days from Tuesday, Jan. 17, to Friday, Jan. 20, when President-elect Donald Trump takes the oath of office.

Director Andrew Samwick participated on the Tuesday panel titled “Domestic Issues: Governance; Immigration; Education; and the Budget.”

Samwick believes the forums are an opportunity to think rigorously about some of the changes under discussion by the new administration.

Leadership and the Paradox of Plenty

This week's session was led by Professor Andrew Samwick, who currently serves as both the Director of the Rockefeller Center and the Sandra and Arthur Irving Professor of Economics at Dartmouth College. Outside of Dartmouth, he currently serves as a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, and in 2003 and 2004, he was the chief economist on the staff of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers. Professor Samwick graduated summa cum laude in economics from Harvard College and received his PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Professor Samwick's session centered on an economics concept, the "natural resource curse." The term refers to the "paradox of plenty," in which countries with more natural resources do not necessarily experience greater economic growth. Professor Samwick applied the concept to leadership, prompting the Rockefeller Leadership Fellows to question the vast disparity of resources in the world and how countries operate in environments of scarcity - and then, most importantly, how one might avoid the natural resource curse when in a leadership role.

Social Entrepreneurship is Finding a Home at Dartmouth

At a recent Rockefeller Center Board of Visitors meeting, four students who completed PBPL 43/ECON 77 Social Entrepreneurship,  Hoi Wong '17, Elijah Moreno '15, Avery Feingold '17, and Katherine McAvoy '17 talked abut their course experience and the resulting project. Photo by Hung Nguyen '18.

Andrew Samwick, Director of the Rockefeller Center, Appointed to the Census Scientific Advisory Committee

Andrew Samwick, Director of the Rockefeller Center, was appointed to the US Census Bureau's Scientific Advisory Committee. 

Andrew Samwick, the Director of the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy, was appointed to the Census Scientific Advisory Committee by the US Census Bureau Director, John H. Thompson. The Census Bureau's Scientific Advisory Committee was chartered to provide advice on the design, operation, and implementation of the Census Bureau's programs.

Thompson said "We are excited to add such an array of expertise to our advisory committee. These are leading voices from the scientific community, offering the kind of experience and outside perspective that the Census Bureau needs as we set course for the future of data collection while maintaining our commitment to statistical quality."

Former NH House Speaker Norelli Named Perkin Bass Visitor

The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences has announced that former Speaker of the New Hampshire House Terie Norelli, who now leads the New Hampshire Women’s Foundation, will be the third Perkins Bass Distinguished Visitor for the 2015-2016 academic year.

“I'm really looking forward to coming to Dartmouth as Perkins Bass Visitor and engaging with the next generation coming up,” Norelli says. “I think that younger people are less interested in all the conflict we see in politics today and more interested in working together to find solutions. And quite frankly, I think women often have a more collaborative approach that will be reinforced by a younger generation that already has that mindset.”

Norelli was the first Democratic woman to lead the New Hampshire House. During her tenure in leadership, from 2007 to 2014, she worked to pass marriage equality and three state budgets, and was a leader of the bipartisan negotiations that led to the passage of Medicaid expansion in the state.

Students Create Studying Startup

The following article originally appeared in The Dartmouth on August 14, 2015.

Drawing from student feedback as well as startup methodology learned in economics professor Andrew Samwick’s social entrepreneurship course, a group of students at the College has founded BookUp, a startup that allows students to connect with academic resources inside and outside the classroom.

The logo design for BookUp was decided upon with input from Dartmouth students and faculty.

BookUp aims to link students with academic resources available on campus as well as match students up as study partners based on class name and other factors.

The four students involved in the project are Elijah Moreno ’15, Brian Kim ’15, Jacob Ammon ’15 and Dan MacDonald ’17.


The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences