Prior to her appointment at Brown, President Paxson was dean of the Woodrow Wilson School of International and Public Affairs and the Hughes Rogers Professor of Economics and Public Affairs at Princeton University.
While at Princeton, President Paxson also served as associate chair and chair of the Department of Economics and was the founding director of a National Institute on Aging Center for the Economics and Demography of Aging. In 2000, she founded the Center for Health and Wellbeing, an interdisciplinary research center in the Woodrow Wilson School for which she served as the director until 2009.
President Paxson is a nationally recognized leader in higher education and a respected economist and public health expert. Her early scholarship focused on international economic problems of labor supply, mobility, savings, inequality, and aging, with later research addressing the relationship of economic factors to health and welfare over the life course, particularly on the health and welfare of children. She has authored or co-authored numerous journal articles and served as vice president of the American Economic Association in 2012. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
President Paxson is a 1982 honors graduate of Swarthmore College, Phi Beta Kappa, and earned her graduate degrees in economics at Columbia University (M.A., 1985; Ph.D., 1987).