Research interests: Insurance in developing countries, development economics, actuarial science, decision under uncertainty, financial theory.


Daniel Clarke and Stefan Dercon (2016) “Dull Disasters? How Planning Ahead Will Make a Difference”, Oxford University Press. [Open access version]

'Economic losses from disasters are now reaching an average of US$250–$300 billion a year. In the last 20 years, more than 530,000 people died as a direct result of extreme weather events; millions more were seriously injured. Most of the deaths and serious injuries were in developing countries. Meanwhile, highly infectious diseases will continue to emerge or re-emerge, and natural hazards will not disappear. But these extreme events do not need to turn into large-scale disasters. Better and faster responses are possible. The authors contend that even though there is much generosity in the world to support the responses to and recovery from natural disasters, the current funding model, based on mobilizing financial resources after disasters take place, is flawed and makes responses late, fragmented, unreliable, and poorly targeted, while providing poor incentives for preparedness or risk reduction. The way forward centres around reforming the funding model for disasters, moving towards plans with simple rules for early action and that are locked in before disasters through credible funding strategies—all while resisting the allure of post-disaster discretionary funding and the threat it poses for those seeking to ensure that disasters have a less severe impact.'

Published academic papers

  1. Clarke, Daniel J. (2016). "A Theory of Rational Demand for Index Insurance." American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, 8(1): 283-306.
  2. Stefan Dercon, Ruth Vargas Hill, Daniel Clarke, Ingo Outes-Leon, Alemayehu Seyoum Taffesse, Offering rainfall insurance to informal insurance groups: Evidence from a field experiment in Ethiopia, Journal of Development Economics, Volume 106, January 2014, Pages 132-143.
  3. Clarke, D.J. and D. Grenham (2013). Microinsurance and natural disasters: Challenges and options, Environmental Science & Policy.


  1. World Bank (2016). Disaster Risk Finance as a Tool for Development: A Summary of Findings from the Disaster Risk Finance Impact Analytics Project, The World Bank, Washington, DC.
  2. Clarke, D. J., N. Cooney, A. Edwards, and A. Jinks. 2016. Evaluating Sovereign Disaster Risk Finance Strategies: Guidance and Case Studies, The World Bank, Washington, DC.
  3. World Bank (2015). Kenya Toward a National Crop and Livestock Insurance Program: Summary of Policy Suggestions and Background Report, The World Bank, Washington, DC.
  4. World Bank (2014). Financial Protection Against Natural Disasters: An Operational Framework for Disaster Risk Financing and Insurance, The World Bank, Washington, DC.
  5. World Bank (2011). Enhancing Crop Insurance in India and Summary of Policy Suggestions, The World Bank, Washington, DC.

Working papers

  1. Clarke, D. J., and L. Wren-Lewis. 2016. Solving Commitment Problems in Disaster Risk Finance, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 7721.
  2. Clarke, D. J., O. Mahul, R. Poulter, and T.-L. Teh. 2016. Evaluating Sovereign Disaster Risk Finance Strategies: A Framework, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 7720.
  3. Clarke, D. J., S. Coll-Black, N. Cooney, and A. Edwards. 2016. A Methodology to Assess Indicative Costs of Risk Financing Strategies for Scaling Up Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Programme, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 7719.
  4. Morsink, K., D. J. Clarke, and S. Mapfumo. 2106. How to Measure Whether Index Insurance Provides Reliable Protection, The World Bank Group, Washington, DC.
  5. Clarke, D.J. and R.V. Hill, (2012). Cost Benefit Analysis of the African Risk Capacity Facility, IFPRI.
  6. Mahul, O., N. Verma and D.J. Clarke (2012). Improving famers' access to agricultural insurance in India, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 5987.
  7. Clarke, D.J., O. Mahul, K.N. Rao and N. Verma, (2012). Weather Based Crop Insurance in India, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 5985.
  8. Clarke, D.J., O. Mahul and N. Verma, (2012). Index Based Crop Insurance Product Design and Ratemaking: The case of the modified NAIS in India, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 5986.
  9. Clarke, D.J. (2011). A Theory of Rational Demand for Index Insurance, Department of Economics Discussion Paper 572, University of Oxford.
  10. Clarke, D.J. (2011). Reinsuring the Poor: Group Microinsurance Design and Costly State Verification, Department of Economics Discussion Paper 573, University of Oxford.
  11. Clarke, D.J. and O. Mahul, (2011). Catastrophe risk financing and contingent credit: a dynamic analysis, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 5693.
  12. Clarke, D.J. and S. Dercon (2008). Insurance, Credit and Safety Nets for the Poor in a World of Risk Working Papers 81, United Nations, Department of Economics and Social Affairs.

Other Work in Progress

  1. Microinsurance decisions: evidence from Ethiopia, (with Gautam Kalani), Working Paper 2011.
  2. Crop micro-insurance: tackling poverty, one insurance policy at a time (with Dermot Grenham, Agrotosh Mookerjee, James Sharpe and Dan Stein), Working Paper 2011, Winner of Brian Hey Prize 2010.

DPhil Thesis

  1. Insurance Design for Developing Countries: Thesis and Slides used in thesis defense

Articles for The Actuary Magazine

  1. Microinsurance: Gathering pace, The Actuary, September 2011.
  2. Jumping up the equity ladder, The Actuary, January/February 2009.
  3. A pool of uncertainty, The Actuary, April 2008.