Tavneet Suri

Maurice F. Strong Career Development Professor
Associate Professor of Applied Economics


Tavneet Suri is a development economist who studies the evolution of markets and various market failures in the economies of Sub-Saharan Africa. Her main areas of focus are agriculture and formal and informal financial access, such as the adoption of seed technologies in Kenya and the extent of informal risk-pooling mechanisms in rural Kenya. Suri's ongoing research includes understanding the adoption and impact of mobile money (M-PESA) in Kenya; the role of infrastructure in agricultural markets in Sierra Leone; the diffusion of improved coffee-farming practices through social networks in Rwanda; and the role of different types of formal and informal collateral in credit markets for assets in Kenya. She regularly spends time in the field, managing her various research projects and data collection activities.

Suri is a faculty research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); an affiliate of the Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development (BREAD), the Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL), and the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR); and co-director of the Agriculture Research Program at the International Growth Center.

Faculty Media

  • Reaching the Poor: Mobile Banking and Financial Inclusion

    In a recent Slate article, Jamie Zimmerman and Sascha Meinrath lament the exclusion of the poor from Kenyas much-touted expansion of mobile money, exemplified by the growth of M-PESA. Citing our...

  • MIT Sloans Tavneet Suri Shows How M-PESA, a Cell Phone-ased Payment System, is Helping Kenyans

    As the developed world begins its recovery from the global economic meltdown, the financial architecture in parts of the developing world is being rapidly transformed by a mobile payment system...

  • Best Prof: Tavneet Suri

    n Fact: I am fluent in English; Punjabi (a language indigenes to the region in the Indian sub-continent that straddles the border between India and Pakistan); and Swahili. I have a fair grasp of...


Contact Information

Office: E62-517
Phone: (617) 253-7159
Email: tavneet@mit.edu
Website: http://www.mit.edu/~tavneet/
Support Staff
Name: Rose Ziv Carpenter
Phone: (617) 253-9746