Oliver W. Kim

Hong Kong

Some Thoughts on Creativity and Economic Research

Mar 9, 2023

As of the fifth year of my economics PhD, I have published zero scientific papers, written a dozen short stories that no one has read, and sold precisely one painting. I am, therefore, one of the last people you should ask about creative success.

Research Tips

Sep 22, 2022

Here are some tips (mostly “life hacks”) with fairly broad applicability to research students. I’ve found that advice more often reflects the experiences of the giver than the needs of the receiver, so reading unpersonalized advice on the Internet can be very hit-or-miss. But, if you’re a Berkeley econ grad student, or interested in econ grad school in general, I’m happy to chat. DM me on Twitter or shoot me an email and we can set up a time.

The Mountain To Climb

Jan 1, 2022 At current growth rates, how long will it take for developing countries to catch up to the rich world?

The Real Development was the Friends We Made Along the Way

Apr 7, 2021

Albert Hirschman.

This is a blog about development economics, and there’s surely no better way to start than by writing about Albert Hirschman–one of the pioneers of the field, and quite possibly the most interesting person to ever become an economist. Originally I set out to write a review of Albert Hirschman’s 1958 Strategy of Economic Development, but the tale grew in the telling–into a biography of Hirschman’s fascinating early life, then a broader history of development economics, and at last into a reflection on the current state of the field.

The RA's Guide to Busia

Jul 26, 2019

Spending a summer doing fieldwork in Busia, Kenya has become a rite of passage for Berkeley development RAs. When I was planning my trip, I wish there’d been a guide with the collected experience of former RAs all in one place—here’s my attempt at writing it. All information is current as of summer 2019.


Feb 7, 2019

Hello. I am a first-year PhD student in Economics at UC Berkeley, starting in 2018. I did my undergrad at Harvard College, graduating in 2016, and worked for two years at the New York Fed.