Dr. Gerardo P. Sicat, Emeritus Professor of Economics at the University of the Philippines (U.P.), has a wide body of workon Philippine economic development issues. His long career has gone through three stages as: (1) university teacher and economist; (2) government official; (3) international development service. Today, he is back to stage (1), writing on economic development issues.

Youth and education.He was born in 1935 in Pampanga, a province in the island of Luzon, but grew up from a young boyto manhood in Manila. He is a product of the Philippine public school system. From 1953 to 1958, he studied at the University of the Philippines, finishing three degrees in record time, the last of which was his M.A. in 1958.

Academic career. His first job was in 1957 as research assistant at the U.P. Institute of Public Administration (now National College of Public Administration and Governance). In 1958, he was appointed assistant instructor in the U.P. Department of Economics.

In September, 1959, he went to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) for advanced studies on a Rockefeller Foundation-supported fellowship. He finished the Ph.D. in Economics in February, 1963 and immediately rejoined his department at the University of the Philippines as Assistant Professor of Economics.

Immersed in teaching and research, he gained national attention as he rose in the ranks to full Professor by 1969.

Government career.In July, 1970 he was appointed to the Cabinet, as Chairman of the National Economic Council (NEC).He was then 34 years old. The NEC was the country’s national planning agency and represented a high policy council, composed of members from the Congress, the Senate and the Executive branch of the government.

In 1973, the government planning agencies were reorganized. He was made Director General of the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA), a new and more powerful economic planning agency which he organized and staffed completely.

He headed this body from 1973 to 1981 with the concurrent title of Minister of Economic Planning. In this capacity, he headed the Philippine participation to the ASEAN Economic Ministers meetings. He left NEDA in 1981 and became Chairman of the Philippine National Bank and remained there until 1984. When he left NEDA, the country was still five years from the 1986 EDSA revolution.

During 1970 to 1983, he also served as a member of the University of the Philippines Board of Regents.

International economic career at the World Bank.At 49 years in 1985, he joined the World Bank to head the public economics group in the Research Department. After reorganization at the World Bank, he moved to the central vice presidency on lending operations as economic adviser. He ended his international career in the economic evaluation of the Bank’s lending program on his retirement in 1997.

In 1998, he rejoined the UP School of Economics to teach and resume economic research. Upon his retirement, he was made Emeritus Professor of Economics.