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Jose Tapia, PhD

Jose Tapia, PhD

Department of Politics
Office: MacAlister 3021-E


  • PhD, Economics, New School for Social Research, New York, 2002
  • MPH, Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, 1992
  • MBBCh, Medicine & Surgery, Universidad Complutense, Madrid, 1981

Curriculum Vitae:

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Research Interests:

  • political economy
  • mortality
  • social development
  • business cycles
  • Chernobyl
  • climate change
  • world economy


José Tapia is a professor of politics with a background in health sciences and economics. He worked in Spain as a primary care doctor, and in the publishing industry. In 1989 he moved to the US to work for WHO. After teaching eleven years at the University of Michigan, he joined Drexel in 2014. His early research focused on the effects of economic changes on mortality. More recently his interests have moved toward climate change, environmental issues, and the world economy. His most recent books are Chernobyl and the Mortality Crisis in Eastern Europe and the USSR (De Gruyter, 2022), and Six Crises of the World Economy: Globalization and Economic Turbulence since the 1960s to the COVID-19 Pandemic (Palgrave-Macmillan, in press). He teaches courses on international political economy, political economy of climate change, social development, and political parties. He plays chess, and is passionate about movies (for instance by Kurosawa, Truffaut, or Kubrick), music (for example by Johann Sebastian Bach, Mahler, Shostakovich, Joan Baez, The Beatles, or Atahualpa Yupanqui) and literature (by Mark Twain, Tolstoy, Lu Xun, George Orwell, Roberto Bolaño, Primo Levi, Federico García Lorca, Constantine Cavafy, Ondra Lysohorsky, and many other authors). He will retire soon.

Selected Publications:

  • Tapia JA (2022). Las crisis económicas con una perspectiva de un siglo: Wesley Mitchell. Revista de Economía Critica 33:71-83.
  • Tapia JA, Spash CL (2019). Policies to reduce CO2 emissions: Fallacies and evidence from the United States and California. Environmental Science & Policy 94:262-266.
  • Wang Q & Tapia JA (2019). Economic growth and mental health in 21st century China. Social Science & Medicine 220:387-395.
  • Tapia JA. (2018). Inexorable march toward utter climate disaster? CNS — Capitalism Nature Socialism 29(4):21-30.
  • Tapia JA et al. (2018). Cardiovascular risk factors, depression, and alcohol consumption during joblessness and during recessions in CARDIA young adults. American Journal of Epidemiology 187(11):2339-2345.
  • Tapia JA (2017). Macroeconomic effects on mortality: Issues, controversies, and directions for research. In Scott RA & Buchmann M, eds. Emerging Trends in the Social & Behavioral Sciences. New York, Wiley, 1-16.
  • Tapia JA, Ionides EL (2017). Population health and the economy: Mortality and the Great Recession in Europe. Health Economics 26:e219–35.
  • Regidor E, Vallejo F, Tapia JA, et al. (2016). Faster mortality decline in low socioeconomic groups during the economic crisis in Spain: a cohort study of 36 million people. Lancet 388: 2642–52.
  • Tapia JA, Ionides EL (2016). Statistical evidence shows that mortality tends to fall during recessions: A rebuttal to Catalano and Bruckner. International Journal of Epidemiology 45 (5): 1683-1686.
  • Tapia JA, Rodriguez JA (2015). Health, economic crisis, and austerity: A comparison of Greece, Finland and Iceland. Health Policy 119(7):941-953.
  • Tapia JA. (2015). Money and Say’s law: On the macroeconomic models of Kalecki, Keen, and Marx. Real-World Economics Review 70:110-120.
  • Tapia JA. (2013). Does investment call the tune? Empirical evidence and endogenous theories of the business cycle. Research in Political Economy 28:229-259.
  • Tapia JA, Carpintero Ó (2013). “Dynamics and Economic Aspects of Climate Change” in Combating Climate Change: An Agricultural Perspective, ed. by Kang MS & Banga SS. Boca Ratón, FL, CRC Press, 29-58, 2013.
  • Tapia JA, Ionides EL, Carpintero O (2012). Climate change and the world economy: Short-run determinants of atmospheric CO2. Environmental Science & Policy 21:50-62.
  • Tapia JA, Diez Roux AV (2009). Life and death during the Great Depression. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 106:17290-17295.