Productivity isn’t everything, but in the long run it is almost everything

(P. Krugman, 1994)

What is the GFP?

The OECD Global Forum on Productivity (GFP) aims to foster international co-operation between public bodies with responsibility for promoting productivity-enhancing policies. The GFP provides a platform on which participants will convene to exchange information and discuss best practices as well as a framework within which to undertake productivity analysis that is complementary to the OECD’s regular work programme.

The work programme of the GFP is guided by a Steering Group of countries. The group provides support and funding to the activities of the GFP.

Productivity: What is it and why do we care about it?

Productivity is about “working smarter” rather than “working harder”. It reflects our ability to produce more output by better combining inputs, owing to new ideas, technological innovations and business models. Productivity growth is therefore essential for an economy to increase its living standards and offer  a better life to future generations.

Why are so many economies worried about their productivity performance lately?

Despite rapid technological change, increasing participation of firms and countries in global value chains, and rising education levels, productivity growth has slowed across all advanced economies. In fact, productivity growth in the post-crisis period was even weaker than before the crisis. These seemingly contradictory facts have sparked a lively debate on the underlying causes and future prospects.

About -Growth in labour productivity in advanced economies since 1970

Notes: Central Europe includes Austria, Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Switzerland; Nordic countries includes: Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden; Southern Europe includes Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain. For 1970-96, Central Europe excludes Austria.
Source:OECD Productivity Statistics (database), February 2016.

How does the GFP contribute to the debate?

The GFP brings together the national and supra-national efforts mentioned above so as to leverage country-specific experiences to the long-term benefit of other countries. It is a practical, interactive tool that helps to promote the international co-operation on analysis; allows for a mutual exchange of information and data; and facilitates the sharing of experiences and policy developments. In so doing, the GFP can help those inside or outside governments seeking answers to three questions:

  • What factors can explain the productivity slowdown?
  • What can countries do to improve future prospects for productivity growth and innovation?
  • What can countries do to improve the design of institutions seeking to promote higher productivity and inclusiveness?

GFP team

The work programme of the GFP is guided by a Steering Group of founding countries. The group provides support and funding to the activities of the GFP.

Chairs of the Steering Group:

Dan Andrews

Dan Andrews is the Chief Advisor in the Macroeconomic Group of the Australian Treasury. He is responsible for deepening the understanding of Australia's productivity challenge and providing advice to the Australian government on productivity-enhancing structural reforms. In this capacity, Dan leads a cross-government effort to improve access to high quality administrative microdata sources. He also oversees a rapidly expanding team of applied microeconomists that use cutting-edge empirical techniques to explore the structural drivers of productivity and wage growth, with a view to strengthen the evidence base for policy. Before joining the Treasury, Dan held the position of Deputy Head of the Structural Policy Analysis Division and was the leader of the Productivity Workstream in the OECD Economics Department. His research has focused on exploiting micro-data to assess the causes of the global productivity slowdown and the impact of structural reforms on growth. With an academic background in economics, he also holds a Master's in Public Administration from Harvard University.


Ricardo Alves

Ricardo Pinheiro Alves is currently Director of the Research Office of the Portuguese Ministry of the Economy, coordinator of the National Productivity Board and Assistant Professor at UE-IADE, Lisbon. Previously, he held several positions in the Ministry of the Economy since 2008 while representing Portugal at different committees in the OECD and the Council of the European Union. He is also Assistant Professor at Universidade da Beira Interior and at Universidade Europeia / IADE since 2001. Since 1992 he held several places in the banking industry. He is a member of the board of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Portugal-Spain and a member of the board of Finifundos, a real-estate fund.

Stefan Profit

Stefan Profit holds the position of a Deputy Director General in the Economic Policy Department of the German Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy. His directorate deals with macroeconomic developments, economic analyses and projections. Before assuming this position, he was in charge of a unit focusing on the empirical research in the field of inclusive growth, productivity and investment, as well as assessing growth and distributional effects of structural reforms. During previous assignments in the ministry, he worked in the field of labor market reform and energy policy, foreign economic affairs, policy planning, and served as a personal advisor to the Minister. Previous to his engagement within the federal government he worked for the Bertelsmann Foundation. He has an academic background in labor economics holding a doctoral degree in Economics from Humboldt University Berlin.

OECD Secretariat:

Chiara Criscuolo

Chiara Criscuolo leads the productivity, enterprise dynamics and policy evaluation work of the Directorate for Science Technology and Innovation (STI), including its forefront cross-country microdata projects. Prior to joining OECD, she was at the London School of Economics. She holds a PhD in Economics from University College London and her work features in leading outlets, including the American Economic Review.

Patrick Lenain

Patrick Lenain leads a team of OECD economists who provide economic advice to the governments of Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Mexico and United States. This advice is based on empirical research and econometric tools applied to households and firm-level surveys and uses administrative tax and social records. He is also an Adjunct Professor of Economics at Université de Paris-Est, where he teaches macroeconomic policy and research methodology. Before joining the OECD, he had a career of 15 years at the IMF. He has also served as senior advisor to the French Treasury and the European Commission.

Giuseppe Nicoletti has been heading since 2004 the Structural Policy Analysis Division at the OECD Economics Department, where he is in charge of cross-country structural studies, including the Productivity Workstream. He has published extensively on both refereed journals and volumes on the influence of policies and institutions on the determinants of growth and productivity. He holds a Ph. D. in Economics from New York University.



Peter Gal

Peter Gal is Senior Economist and Project Manager for the GFP. He has more than 10 years of experience working on productivity, labour market and structural policy issues, in particular by using cross-country firm-level data. He contributed to the work of several directorates at the OECD, as well as at the IMF and previously at the central bank of Hungary. He holds a PhD in Economics from the Tinbergen Institute Amsterdam.

Timo Leidecker

Timo Leidecker is a Junior Economist in the GFP team, where he currently analyses the role of workers, managers and firm characteristics for productivity and the influence of policies on these factors using detailed micro-level data from several countries. He also contributes to the planning and organisation of GFP events. Timo holds a PhD in Economics from the University of Warwick.


Márcio Carvalho is engaged in external communications and event planning for the Global Forum on Productivity. He is currently finishing a Double Degree program with Bocconi University (MSc in Economics and Management of Government and International Organizations) and the Hertie School of Governance (Master of Public Policy)
Sarah Michelson Sarah Michelson is currently working as a programme and communication co-ordinator for the Global Forum on Productivity. Prior to joining the Economics Department of the OECD in 2013, Sarah worked in the Public Sector Integrity division. She holds a Masters in contemporary History from Université Paris 1, Panthéon-Sorbonne.

Current and past members of the GFP


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