Dr. Arpita Bhattacharjee

Dr. Arpita Bhattacharjee


I am an economist and teaching fellow at the Leeds University Business School (LUBS) and have a PhD in Economics from the University of California-Riverside (2017). My academic profile is policy-focused and interdisciplinary and attempts to transcend the boundaries of my academic training. To that end I am constantly striving to collaborate with academic peers from allied disciplines as well as colleagues from different sectors such as the government, industry, third sector, and international organizations. 

Prior to starting my PhD I had worked with a range of organizations – Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (Government of India), International Growth Centre, UNDP Small Grants Programme – in different research-based capacities. The experience of working with various stakeholders across  organizations and sectors is what set me on my current career path.

My primary research area is the evaluation of policies targeted to address inequalities in human development outcomes by social and economic constructs such as race, gender, caste, and class. I use a combination of observational and quasi-experimental methods to estimate the impact of such policies; and combine lessons from economics and allied fields such as politics, psychology, sociology and anthropology to understand the efficacy and limitations of policy design and implementation. Within that ambit, at present my research portfolio covers a wide set of topics - evaluating affirmative action policies in India; developing an analytical framework for adaptive preferences; analysing workplace well-being for intersectional groups in the UK in light of the Equality Act; investigating the associations between fertility and labour market outcomes; investigating inclusive growth in UK; and exploring the channel for cultural spillovers from trade synergies between India and Korea. 

I first joined LUBS in 2017 as a postdoc on the EPSRC Self-Repairing Cities project, investigating the potential socioeconomic impacts of introducing robots in city infrastructure services. In 2019, as part of a collaboration between the economics division and the Leeds City Council (LCC), I was placed with the Economic Policy team at LCC to help develop metrics of Inclusive Growth for Leeds City Region. 

I have six years of experience teaching courses in quantitative methods and applied microeconomics to diverse classrooms of students majoring in different fields. I am quite keen on research-led teaching that can help students connect with the work we do and discern the embedded policy lessons. Exposure to a very diverse student body at UC Riverside and LUBS has helped me cultivate the ability to generate creative ideas that offer alternate presentations of material and better connect with students who seek additional support. Outside of the classroom I also seek out opportunities to help students from underprivileged backgrounds access higher education, one of those being contributing to widening participation activities at LUBS. 

Outside of work, I am passionate about music, reading, and travel. And the occasional game of tennis.

Research interests

Applied Micro-econometrics, Development Economics, Population Economics

Peer Reviewed Paper(s)

N. Agarwal, A. Aiyar, A. Bhattacharjee, J. Cummins, C. Gunadi, D. Singhania, M. Taylor, and E. Wigton-Jones, Month of birth and child height in 40 countries, Economics Letters, 157, pp. 10-13, 2017. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.econlet.2017.05.006

Book Chapter(s)

A. Bhattacharjee, G. Dymski, “Do the robots come to liberate us or to deepen our inequality? The uncertain macrostructural foundations of the robotic age,” Finance, Growth and Inequality, Edward Elgar Publishing 2019

Working Papers

Spillovers in Affirmative Action: Evidence from OBC Quotas in India (under review)

A Model of Adaptive Preferences

Child Mortality and Fertility since turn of the millennium in Sub-Saharan Africa (with Joseph Cummins, William Dow, and Nicholas Wilson)

Work in Progress

Determinants of Fertility: can affirmative action change the trade-offs for women?

Intersecting Disadvantages and Workplace Well-being: progress since the Equality Act (with Juliet Kele)

Inclusive Growth in UK: a Socioeconomic and Regional Perspective (with Andre Pedersen Ystehede)

Can trade synergies lead to female empowerment? Exploring the case of India and Korea (with Yoon Jae Ro)



  • PhD Economics (2017), University of California-Riverside
  • MA Economics (2011), Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi
  • BA (Honours) Economics (2009), University of Delhi

Student education

LUBS3340 Economics of Famines 

LUBS3930 Economics of Business and Corporate Strategy 

LUBS3005 Advanced Microeconomics

LUBS2575 Statistics and Econometrics

LUBS1075 Academic, Professional and Research Skills for Studies in Economics

LUBS1275 and LUBS1285 Mathematics and Statistics for Economics 1A and 1B

LUBS2500 Applied Economics

LUBS5134M Master’s Econometrics

LUBS1280 Mathematical Economics

Year 1 tutor