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Michael Kremer: Investing in Vaccines Now Would Buy Time, Save $Billions

October 20, 2020

While vaccine manufacturing capacity is typically built only after clinical approval, Nobel Laureate, Michael Kremer, says building it during the clinical trials could advance vaccine distribution by 6 months or more. (HARVARD UNIVERSITY/UPI/Newscom)

In the early 2000s, Nobel Laureate, Michael Kremer helped develop the design of advance market commitment models (AMCs). They were used to incentivize the private sector to work on issues of relevance for the developing world by pledging that if they developed an appropriate vaccine, funds would be available for those countries to purchase it. The approach resulted in billions of dollars being devoted to pneumococcal vaccines for strains common in developing countries, saving hundreds of thousands of lives. Kremer's latest research focuses on how to expedite the production and distribution of the COVID-19 vaccines immediately following successful medical trials. In this podcast, Kremer says at-risk investment into vaccine manufacturing capacity before clinical approval would advance vaccine distribution by 6 months or more. Michael Kremer shared the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics in 2019 for his work on experimental approaches to alleviating global poverty. He was invited by the Institute for Capacity Development to present this latest research to IMF economists.  Transcript

Check out the University of Chicago's podcast Pandemic Economics

Michael Kremer is Professor in Economics at the University of Chicago, and Director of the Development Innovation Lab.