Cesar A. Hidalgo is the director of the Collective Learning group at the MIT Media Lab and an Associate Professor at MIT.
Recent Projects and Papers
If you could choose the economic activities that a country or region could enter next, what would be the optimal way to choose? In my latest paper with Aamena Alshamsi and Flavio Pinheiro we explore that question. We find that optimal diversification strategies are not trivial and require targeting highly connected activities at a critical intermediate level of diversification. Optimal Diversification Strategies in the Networks of Related Products and Research Activities if forthcoming in Nature Communications (2018).
Computer Visions Uncovers Predictors of Physical Urban Change (2017) In this 2017 PNAS paper we develop a computer vision method to measure physical change in cities using street-level imagery. We find that both education and population density predict improvements in neighborhood infrastructure, in support of theories of human capital agglomeration, and that improvement is more likely in neighborhoods closer to both city centers and other physically attractive neighborhoods.
Linking Economic Complexity, Institutions, and Income Inequality (2017), World Development, 93, 75-93. This paper documents a strong and robust correlation between economic complexity and income inequality, and argues that a country's level of income inequality is bounded by its productive structure.
IN MY SHOES (2017), In My Shoes is an eight episode video series documenting the personal and professional life of professor Hidalgo. The series was filmed in Washington, Riyadh, Portland, Switzerland, Monterrey, and Paris, and also includes an episode showing the launch of DataUSA and the Media Lab members event.
Reunification of Germany's Research Network (2017). With Bogang Jun, we study the reunification of Germany's research collaboration network. We find that reintegration was initially fast but then stagnated at an intermediate level. Also, we find that the East-West balance of a field prior to reunification correlates with a fields subsequent integration, meaning that fields that were neither East or West dominant prior to 1990 reunited faster.
César A. Hidalgo leads the Collective Learning group at The MIT Media Lab and is an Associate Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at MIT. Hidalgo's work focuses on understanding how teams, organizations, cities, and nations learn. At the Collective Learning group, Hidalgo studies collective learning and develops software tools to facilitate learning in organizations. Hidalgo's academic publications have been cited more than 10,000 times and his online systems have received more than 100 million views and numerous awards. Hidalgo's latest book, Why Information Grows (Basic Books, 2015), has been translated to over ten languages. Hidalgo is also the co-author of The Atlas of Economic Complexity (MIT Press, 2014), and a co-founder of Datawheel LLC, a company that has professionalized the creation of large data visualization engines. Hidalgo lives in Somerville Massachusetts with his wife Anna and their daughter Iris.
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