Gianfranco  Piras  Headshot


  • Economics
  • School

  • School of Arts and Sciences
  • Expertise

  • Applied Econometrics
  • Urban and Regional Economics
  • Computational Methods
  • Languages

  • Italian, Spanish
  • Dr. Gianfranco Piras is a associate professor of economics at the Catholic University of America. Formerly, he was a research assistant professor at the Regional Research Institute at West Virginia University.

    He has also spent time at various institutions including the Department of City and Regional Planning at Cornell University, the Regional Economic Application Laboratory at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and at the GeoDa center at Arizona State University. He held a position of assistant professor at the Universidad Catolica del Norte in Chile.

    Dr. Piras is a member of the editorial board of Letters of Spatial and Resource Sciences. He teaches in the area of applied econometrics.

    Dr. Piras’ research interests include spatial econometrics and statistics, urban and regional economics, computational methods and software development. He is one of the developers of the R software for statistical computing and he is currently working on two main libraries, for the estimation of spatial panel data models (splm), and for the application of GM methods in spatial econometrics (sphet).

    He has been involved in many research projects and he acted as a consultant for various organizations.

    “Learning the appropriate econometric tools is essential to be able to test any hypothesis. In that sense, in my applied econometric course I provide students with the basic foundations of econometrics and statistical methods, and enable them to develop their own research projects and become not only very good researchers, but also fine policy makers.”– Gianfranco Piras