Mariana Mazzucato (born June 16, 1968) is an economist with dual Italian and United States citizenship. She is a professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value and the director of the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP) at University College London (UCL). She is also a member of the Scottish Government's Council of Economic Advisers. Mazzucato is the author of The Entrepreneurial State: debunking public vs. private sector myths and The Value of Everything: making and taking in the global economy. In 2016, Mazzucato co-edited a book, Rethinking Capitalism: Economics and Policy for Sustainable and Inclusive Growth with Michael Jacobs. In 2013 The New Republic called her one of "the three most important thinkers about innovation".
Mazzucato's research focuses on the relationship between financial markets, innovation and economic growth - at the company, industry and national level. She works within the Schumpeterian framework of evolutionary economics, studying the origin and evolution of persistent differences between firms and how these differences vary across sectors and over the industry life-cycle. Her empirical studies have focused on the automobile, PC, biotech and pharma industries.
In 2013 Mazzucato published The Entrepreneurial State: debunking public vs. private sector myths (Anthem). The ideas in the book were first set out in a shorter pamphlet for the think tank Demos, called The Entrepreneurial State. The 2013 book argues that the idea of the State as a static bureaucratic organisation only needed to ‘fix’ market failures, leaving dynamic entrepreneurship and innovation to the private sector, is wrong. She outlines a number of case studies across different sectors, including biotech, pharmaceuticals and clean technology, to show that the high-risk investments are being made by the state before the private sector gets involved. In a chapter examining the iPhone, she outlines how the technologies that make it ‘smart’ – the internet, GPS, its touchscreen display and the voice-activated Siri – were all Government funded. Two chapters in the book are dedicated to the emerging ‘green technology’ revolution. She details the public funds that she argues are laying the groundwork for this revolution in a similar way that the state invested in the most high-risk areas of biotech and nanotech. The book concludes with the author's contention that in all these examples, the risks were socialized while the rewards were privatized, and considers different ways to change this dynamic to produce more ‘inclusive growth’.