Amir Farmanesh

امير فرمنش

Amir Farmanesh

Assistant Professor,

Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs,

Virginia Commonwealth University


"Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I'll meet you there." -Romi


Graduate Teachings:

Virginia Commonwealth University, Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs:

 Ph.D. in Public Policy and Administration:

*    PPAD 716: Economics and public policy, [Fall 2011]

*    PPAD 722: Survey of data analysis techniques for public policy and administration [Spring 2012]

*    PPAD 722: Macroeconomics and policy analysis, [Spring 2012]


 Master of Public Administration:

*    PADM 624: Quantitative Methods for Public Administration, [Spring 2012]


University of Maryland, Smith School of Business:

 Master of Business Administration:

* BUDT 733: Data Analysis for Decision Makers, [2011]


University of Maryland, School of Public Policy:

 Executive Master in Public Management:

* PUAF Exec: Policy analysis for managers, [Syllabus, 2011] 


Master of Public Policy:

* PUAF 610: Quantitative aspects of policy analysis, [Syllabus, 2010]


Erasmus University Rotterdam, International Institute of Social Studies:

Master of Public Policy:

* Anti-corruption policies, 2010

* Good governance practices, 2010


Sharif University of Technology:

* Econometrics approach to development studies, Summer 2007, [English]  [Persian]



Research Interests:

       * Link to my academic papers at EconPapers


   List of my working papers:

* Business-enabling environments: credit to finance and corporate tax

* Business Bribery Index (BBI): A cross-country study of business bribery

* Illicit financial flows in East Africa

* Asking the hard questions: Sensitive topics and difficult environments, a study in survey methodology


An article about my grassroots experiences:

"Amir Farmanesh has become a catalyst for real social change and enhancements in his native country of Iran. Amir is an inspiration to those around him, and will likely continue to have a vital role in shaping the world for many generations to come."

(International Studies Journal, Vol. 1, No. 3, Winter 2005)

An old interview with me (PDF)


farmanes [at]

Short bio:

Amir Farmanesh is a faculty member at the Wilder School of Government & Public Affairs, Virginia Commonwealth University conducting research on governance transformations related to business-enabling environments, financial flows, and fiscal policy of development. In 2009, he was selected as a policy fellow with the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.

In the past, he has worked for several units of the World Bank and the United Nations and has been involved with the United Nations (UNEP - UN-Habitat) Governing Councils and was a member of the United Nations Environment Program advisory council. During his involvement with Iranian civil society, he cofounded Iran Civil Society House, an umbrella organization for the coalitions of NGOs.

Before joining VCU, Amir has taught graduate courses on quantitative analysis and managerial policy analysis at the University of Maryland Smith Business School and School of Public Policy. He has published papers on financial flows and business bribery, the impact of scale economies on spatial allocation of economic activities, and the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. He has received a Master of Public Administration and an M.A. in International Relations both from the Maxwell School of Syracuse University. His Ph.D. is on Policy Studies working with economics Nobel laureate Thomas Schelling as his advisor at the University of Maryland, College Park.