Shanti Gamper-Rabindran


Prof. Gamper-Rabindran analyzes the economic, legal, and political barriers and opportunities for the energy transition to renewable energy and for economic diversification of fossil fuel-reliant communities in the United States and globally. Her book America’s Energy Gamble details how political, financial, and legal institutions entrench fossil fuel dependency, but how efforts to shift to cost-competitive renewable energy have gained traction. Her edited volume The Shale Dilemma: A Global Perspective on Fracking and Shale Development details how countries diverged in their decision to pursue or eschew shale extraction and the impacts of shale extraction on local communities. Current work examines the energy transition in Appalachia and globally. Her papers have also examined risk management in the chemical sector including corporate social responsibility programs, the economic benefits from remediating hazardous waste sites, public health benefits from the provision of piped water in Brazil, and the environmental impacts of the North American Free Trade Agreement. 

Courses Taught

  • PIA 2510 - Political Economy of Development
  • PIA 2502 - Political Economy of Global Environment
  • PIA 2522 - Political Economy of Global Energy
  • PIA 2553 - Political Economy of Global Health
  • Current Issues in Sustainability

    Education & Training

  • Ph.D. Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2001
  • M. Sc. Environmental Management, Oxford, 1999
  • B.A. Jurisprudence, Oxford, 1996
  • B.A. Economics and Environmental Science & Public Policy, Harvard 1994
  • Faculty Award from the University of Pittsburgh for contributions to sustainability, 2020
  • Technical University Munich, August-Wilhelm Scheer Visiting Professor, 2019
Recent Publications
  • America’s Energy Gamble: People Economy and Planet Cambridge University Press 2022
  • The Shale Dilemma: A Global Perspective on Fracking and Shale Development, editor and contributor, University of Pittsburgh Press, 2018.
  • S. Gamper-Rabindran. Fracked communities and taxpayers: shale economics in the United States and Argentina. Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Politics, 2021
  • Shifting away from coal power: prioritizing ratepayers and communities vs. shareholders? Pace Environmental Law Review 2022
Research Interests
  • Environment 
  • Energy
  • Health and development economics policy
  • Applied economics
  • Program evaluation and geographical information systems