As an economist and attorney, Bob Litan has had nearly four decades of experience in the worlds of the law, economic research, and policy, and as an executive in both the private, public and government sectors. Through his extensive publications and many speeches and testimony, he has become a widely recognized national expert in regulation, telecommunications, and financial policy, antitrust, entrepreneurship, innovation, and international trade, among other policy subjects.
Litan currently is a Shareholder with Berger Montague, based in Philadelphia and several other locations throughout the United States, where he specializes in large case antitrust litigation.
Litan has directed economic research at three leading national organizations: the Brookings Institution, the Kauffman Foundation, and Bloomberg Government. He has also been a member of the international advisory board of the Principal Financial Group.
Litan is a well-known speaker who has given hundreds of talks during his career before a wide range of audiences in the United States and around the world. His TedEx Kansas City talk, “An Economist Walks Into a Bar” has been viewed on Youtube over 430,000 times.
Litan has held several appointed positions in the U.S. government. In 1993, he was appointed Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Antitrust Division of the Justice Department, where he oversaw civil non-merger litigation, including the Department’s first antitrust case against Microsoft, and the Department’s positions on regulatory matters, primarily in telecommunications. He also was the Department’s representative to the Administration’s Telecommunications Policy Working Group chaired by Vice President Gore.
In 1995, he was appointed Associate Director of the Office of Management and Budget, where oversaw the budgets of five cabinet level agencies. He later was a consultant to the Department of Treasury on financial modernization and the effectiveness of the Community Reinvestment Act and co-authored several reports on these subjects. In the early 1990s he served as a Member of the Presidential-Congressional Commission on the Causes of the Savings and Loan Crisis. He has chaired two panels of studies for the National Academy of Sciences and has served on one other NAS Committee. He began his career as a Staff Economist at the President’s Council of Economic Advisers.
During his research career, Litan has authored or co-authored 30 books and edited another 14, and authored or co-authored more than 250 articles in professional and popular publications. His latest book is Resolved: Debate can Revolutionize Education and Help Save our Democracy (Brookings Press, 2020). His book Trillion Dollar Economists (Wiley, 2014), in part, was the basis of his TedEx talk later that year. And his book Good Capitalism, Bad Capitalism, co-authored with William Baumol and Carl Schramm (Yale University Press, 2007) has been widely used in university classes and has been translated into ten languages. He has written multiple research articles on entrepreneurship, solely and with various co-authors.
Litan earned his B.S. in Economics (summa cum laude) at the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania; his J.D. at Yale Law School; and his M. Phil. And Ph.D. at Yale University.