Dana Foarta

Assistant Professor, Political Economy

Dana Foarta

Assistant Professor of Political Economy

Philip F. Maritz Faculty Scholar for 2022–2023
Academic Area:

Research Statement

Dana Foarta’s primary research focus is to integrate theoretical models of domestic political decision making into the economic analysis of supranational institutions. Once political institutions are taken into account, richer insights emerge as to the types of common economic policies that governments can implement in practice. Her research asks how we can design institutions to limit the negative effects of political inefficiencies. Another research focus is on the agency problems within and between institutions. Specifically, she studies how the incentives of politicians or regulators, stemming from their re-election concerns or their employment contracts, shape the policy proposals they put forward. She focuses on contracting under strict limitations to monetary compensation (inflexible pay scales), an issue especially relevant to political economy. The challenge of selecting and motivating high ability politicians/regulators is closely related to issues confronting firms when selecting employees or investments, leading to broader implications for contracting.

Research Interests

  • Political Economy
  • Market Structures and Political Power
  • Organizational Economics
  • Institutional and Regulatory Design
  • Dynamic Contracts
  • Regulatory Complexity


Foarta is an assistant professor of political economy at Stanford Graduate School of Business. She teaches a core MBA course, Strategy Beyond Markets. She received her PhD in economics from MIT and her BA in economics and mathematics from Amherst College.

Academic Degrees

  • PhD, Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2014
  • BA, Economics & Mathematics, Amherst College, 2009

Academic Appointments

  • Assistant Professor, Stanford GSB, 2014–present

Awards and Honors

  • Kevin J. O’Donohue Family Faculty Scholar for 2021–22
  • John A. Gunn & Cynthia Fry Gunn Faculty Scholar, 2015–16


Journal Articles

Working Papers

Stanford Case Studies

Stanford University Affiliations

School News