Ben Slay

Senior advisor


Based in: Regional Hub for Europe and CIS

From: USA

Studied at: Indiana University and the University of California

Languages: English, Hungarian, Polish, Russian, Slovak



Hi, I'm Ben Slay. My main areas of expertise are:

  1. Economics of transition
  2. International economics
  3. Macroeconomic policies
  4. Energy and environmental economics
  5. Sustainable development

I have 25 years of experience in economics and policy analysis, policy and programming for sustainable development, research and teaching, and UNDP strategic, programme, project management.

My work

I support UNDP senior management, country offices, United Nations country teams, and national partners in Europe and Central Asia in the areas mentioned above.

I have worked in the private and public sector, and academia, including at PlanEcon Inc. (now part of Global Insight), and teaching economics at a number of American universities and colleges.

Some achievements

  • 2013-2014 Served as UNDP's poverty reduction team leader in the Europe and Central Asian region.
  • 2012 Served as senior advisor for sustainable development in UNDP’s Bureau of Development Policy, in preparation for the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20)
  • 2001 - 2012 Advising government ministers/officials, and UNDP senior management, on key economic development and transition issues.
  • 2008 - 2011 Created the senior economist’s office in UNDP’s Regional Bureau for Europe and the CIS
  • 2005 - 2011 Served as executive editor of the UNDP Development and Transition research bulletin.
  • 2001 - 2008 Served as director of UNDP’s Bratislava Regional Centre. During this time, the Centre's staffing tripled and its programming increased nearly ten-fold.


For more details, you are welcome to contact me directly:


Stories from Ben Slay

peace education: change starts here
How much does peace cost?

A report recently issued by The Institute for Economics and Peace found that the world spent nearly $14 trillion on war (“defence”, “security”) in 2015 alone. To put that in context, that’s 13 percent of global GDP, and it is 100 times greater than the resources set aside for the official development assistance that finances international development cooperation. It makes one wonder – how much does peace cost? How much should it? And is there a way to bring down the cost without compromising global security? more 

 a worker in Tajikistan
Migrant remittances are a lifeline for families, and a force for development

Relative to GDP, remittances flowing into Tajikistan are among the largest in the world. Photo: Mashid Mohadjerin With an influx of refugees and migrants making headlines in Europe and politicians around the world debating the merits of immigration, it’s important to take a step back and consider the development impact migration has for both sending countries and host nations. International labour migration has become a key driver of development around the world. more 

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