David Cutler

Harvard University

David Cutler is the Otto Eckstein Professor of Applied Economics in the Department of Economics at Harvard University. The goal of Professor Cutler’s research is to generate knowledge that can create a healthier population; to do so, he aims to understand all the factors that influence health and how those factors can be modified. Throughout his career, Professor Cutler has therefore published over 300 peer-reviewed publications and two books on a variety of factors that influence health, including medical treatments, environmental conditions, and social factors.  

Honored for his scholarly work and singled out for outstanding mentorship of graduate students, Professor Cutler's work in health economics and public economics has earned him significant academic and public acclaim. He served on the Council of Economic Advisers and the National Economic Council during the Clinton Administration and has advised the Presidential campaigns of Bill Bradley, John Kerry, and Barack Obama as well as served as Senior Health Care Advisor for the Obama Presidential Campaign. Among other affiliations, Professor Cutler has held positions with the National Institutes of Health and the National Academy of Sciences. Currently, he is a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, a member of the Institute of Medicine, and a Fellow of the Employee Benefit Research Institute.  He advises many companies and groups on health care. 

Professor Cutler received an AB from Harvard University and a PhD in Economics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

  • Opening up neighborhoods that offer greater opportunities for social mobility to low- and moderate-income households remains a challenge in the United States. Exclusionary zoning practices act as a barrier to current efforts by restricting the supply of affordable housing.

    April 25, 2024



  • Fair share housing policies offer a mechanism for reducing racial disparities in access to high opportunity areas. Since the 1960s, a number of U.S. states have implemented fair share policies, yet little research has evaluated the impact of fair share on equity or on the wellbeing of program beneficiaries.   The current project addresses this gap by investigating the impact on wellbeing of the longest-running fair share program in the United States: Massachusetts Chapter 40B. Specifically, the research team will use a mixed-methods approach to evaluate the impacts of 40B on racial equity in housing stability, access to opportunity, and health outcomes for program participants. The fact that 40B’s affordable housing units are allocated using a random lottery process will allow the research team to rigorously examine the causal impact of the program on beneficiaries’ outcomes. 

    January 14, 2021


    Has Evidence