Skip to main content

Munseob Lee

Assistant Professor

Munseob Lee is an economist whose research focuses on macroeconomics, growth and development, firm dynamics, and Korea. He has researched what determines growth of firms, and especially how one-time purchases by the government can spur long-term growth of small businesses. He also studied an unequal impact of inflation and showed that low-income households and black families have been bearing the brunt of rising prices in the US.

Lee, who is an Associate Director in GPS’s Korea-Pacific Program, teaches courses including Fiscal and Monetary Policy, Macroeconomics of Development and The Korean Economy.

He has been a visiting fellow at the Asian Development Bank and a visiting scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis and Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Prior to joining UC San Diego, Lee was a research intern at the International Monetary Fund and a sergeant in the Republic of Korea Army.

Lee’s research and interviews have been featured in well-renowned national and global news sources such as Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, Bloomberg, CNN, MarketWatch, Fast Company, Telegraph and Nikkei. His research and interviews also have been featured in San Diego’s local news such as ABC 10, NBC 7, Fox 5, CBS 8, KPBS and The San Diego Union-Tribune.

For more information, please visit Munseob Lee’s personal site.

Education and CV

Ph.D., Economics, University of Chicago, 2017
B.A., Economics, Seoul National University, 2010

GPS Spotlight

Read more → GPS News


Measuring the Cost of Living in Mexico and the U.S., forthcoming at American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, with David Argente and Chang-Tai Hsieh.

Do Resource Windfalls Improve Standard of Living in sub-Saharan African Countries?, forthcoming at Applied Economics, with Cheikh Anta Gueye.

The Cost of Privacy: Welfare Effects of the Disclosure of COVID-19 Cases, Review of Economics and Statistics, Volume 104, Issue 1, Jan. 2022, pp.176-186, with David Argente and Chang-Tai Hsieh.

COVID-19, Commuting Flows, and Air Quality, Journal of Asian Economics, Volume 77, Dec. 2021, Article 101374, with Rachel Finerman.

Cost of Living Inequality during the Great Recession, Journal of the European Economic Association, Volume 19, Issue 2, April 2021, pp.913-952, with David Argente.

Innovation and Product Reallocation in the Great Recession, Journal of Monetary Economics, Volume 93, Jan. 2018, pp.1-20, with David Argente and Sara Moreira.

Book Chapters

High-Skill Immigration, Innovation, and Creative Destruction, In: “The Roles of Immigrants and Foreign Students in US Science, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship.” University of Chicago Press, Feb. 2020, pp.73-98, with Gaurav Khanna.

Federal Reserve Bank Policy Notes

Do Black Households Face Higher and More Volatile Inflation?, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond Economic Brief, No. 22-25, July 2022.

Cost of Living Inequality beyond the Great Recession, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Presentation Brief, April 2022, with David Argente.

Price Volatility Faced by Black and White Households, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Presentation Brief, April 2022, with Claudia Macaluso and Felipe Schwartzman.