UPDATE (October 5, 2023): The “U.S. Productivity Growth: Looking Ahead” symposium has been postponed until 2024.

U.S. Productivity Growth: Looking Ahead (postponed)

October 13, 2023

On October 13, 2023, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York will host a hybrid symposium titled “U.S. Productivity Growth: Looking Ahead.” The goal of the symposium, which is being organized by the New York Fed's Applied Macroeconomics and Econometrics Center, is to stimulate a thought-provoking debate among academics, practitioners, and policymakers on growth and productivity over the next decade. The event will comprise of presentations, followed by Q&A, on the following topics: work from home and the future of cities; AI, tech, and the future of productivity growth; and the major structural forces shaping productivity growth over the next decade.



This conference is open to academics, practitioners, and policymakers virtually. There will be opportunities for Q&A during the event.


This event is open to the public and media virtually. All remarks are on the record and a recording will be made available afterward. For media inquiries, please contact Mariah Measey at Mariah.Measey@ny.frb.org.


Marco Del Negro
Natalia Emanuel
Danial Lashkari

Event Details

Date & Time
October 13, 2023
9:30 AM-3:00 PM EDT

This will be a hybrid event with most panelists participating in-person and the general audience attending virtually.


For logistical inquiries, please contact ny.researchconference@ny.frb.org.


9:30am-9:35am Introduction: Marco Del Negro (Federal Reserve Bank of New York)
9:35am-11:05am Session 1: Work from Home and the Future of Cities
How is remote work changing workplace productivity and does this vary by the type of work (individual vs. collaborative, more or less technical, etc.)? How does the shift to remote work change the density of cities, geographies of residency, and the location of where work is completed? If cities are depopulating, how does that alter agglomeration and the advantages that used to be associated with cities? What can we expect the challenges and advantages of cities to be going forward? What does all of the above imply for aggregate productivity growth over the next decades?

Chair: Natalia Emanuel (Federal Reserve Bank of New York)
Panelists: Emma Harrington (University of Virginia), Sitian Liu (Queen's University), Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh (Columbia University)
11:10am-12:40pm Session 2: AI, Tech, and the Future of Productivity Growth
What are the future growth prospects of the tech sector and its potential contributions to aggregate productivity growth? Has the tech sector reached the state of maturity and will thus slow down? Or will it continue to spread to and disrupt other important sectors of the economy, such as transportation (self-driving cars/trucks), healthcare (personalized medicine), and education (learning platforms)? What are the prospects of AI (and in particular large language models) for disrupting the service industries? Is this likely to bring about substantial productivity growth in the medium run? What industries are most likely to be affected, if any? Taken as a whole, how likely are the tech and AI industries to spur an acceleration of productivity growth over the next decade?

Chair: Danial Lashkari (Federal Reserve Bank of New York)
Panelists: Avi Goldfarb (University of Toronto), Prasanna Tambe (University of Pennsylvania), Laura Veldkamp (Columbia University)
12:40pm-1:30pm Lunch
1:30pm-3:00pm Session 3: What Are the Major Structural Forces Shaping Productivity Growth over the Next Decades?
Which of the following structural drivers will play the most important roles in shaping productivity growth over the next few decades? I) declining fertility and slowing population growth, II) the rise of superstar workers and the inequality in opportunities for skill acquisition, III) the rise of superstar firms and market power; IV) the disruptive effects of climate change and/or the opportunities offered by the transition to green technologies, V) de-globalization and the breakdown of the global supply chains, and VI) the potential of AI to revolutionize the service sectors.

Chair: Jeremy Pearce (Federal Reserve Bank of New York)
Panelists: John Fernald (Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco), Lucia Foster (U.S. Census), Robert Gordon (Northwestern University)

John Fernald
Senior Research Advisor
Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

Lucia Foster
Chief Economist
U.S Census Bureau

Avi Goldfarb
University of Toronto

Robert Gordon
Northwestern University

Emma Harrington
Assistant Professor
University of Virginia

Sitian Liu
Assistant Professor
Queen's University

Prassana (Sonny) Tambe
Associate Professor
University of Pennsylvania

Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh
Columbia University

Laura Veldkamp
Columbia University


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