Intuit QuickBooks Small Business Index About the Team

About the team

Learn more about the international team of economists, led by Professor Ufuk Akcigit, who are collaborating with Intuit QuickBooks to create the Intuit QuickBooks Small Business Index, updated monthly.

Ufuk Akcigit

Ufuk Akcigit headshot.

Ufuk Akcigit is the Arnold C. Harberger Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago. He is an elected Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, Center for Economic Policy Research, and the Center for Economic Studies, Research Professor and the Head of the “East-West Germany Economic Gap” Research Group at the Halle Institute for Economic Research in Germany. He has received a BA in economics at Koc University, 2003, and Ph.D. in economics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2009.


As a macroeconomist, Professor Akcigit’s research centers on economic growth, technological creativity, innovation, entrepreneurship, productivity, and firm dynamics. His research has been repeatedly published in the top economics journals, cited by numerous policy reports, and by the media.


The contributions of Professor Akcigit’s research have been recognized by the National Science Foundation with the CAREER Grant (NSF's most prestigious awards in support of early-career faculty), the Kauffman Foundation's Junior Faculty Grant, and the Kiel Institute Excellence Award, among many other awards from institutions. 

In 2019, Professor Akcigit was named the winner of the Max Plank-Humboldt Research Award, aimed at scientists with outstanding future potential, with an endowment of €1.5 million. In 2021, he was awarded the prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship and named a Fellow of the Econometric Society. In 2022, he received the Sakip Sabanci International Research Award and Kiel Institute’s Global Economy Prize.

Read more about Professor Akcigit's career and achievements here.

Javier Miranda

Javier Miranda headshot.

Javier Miranda is Deputy Head of the Department of Structural Change and Productivity and the Halle Institute for Economic Research in Germany. He is also Associate Professor in Microeconomics, Productivity Research at Friedrich-Schiller University Jena. Professor Miranda began his career at the U.S. Census Bureau in the District of Columbia after receiving his Ph.D. in Economics from American University in 2004. Before joining the Census, Miranda was a research consultant at the World Bank and the Urban Institute. 


Professor Miranda’s research and publications focus on business dynamism, productivity growth, entrepreneurship, job creation, innovation, and firm financing. Among his publications are articles in the American Economic Review, Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Journal Macroeconomics, Review of Economic and Statistics, IMF Review, World Bank Economic Review, Journal of Business Valuation and Economic Loss, and the NBER Macroeconomics Annual. Read more of his work here.


Professor Miranda has received the U.S. Department of Commerce Silver medal (2020), the U.S Department of Commerce Department Bronze Medal (2011), and the Census Bureau Director's Award for Innovation (2007). His contributions to data infrastructure are notable. Miranda was responsible for the development of the Longitudinal Business Database, the Business Dynamics Statistics, the Business Formation Statistics, and the Synthetic Longitudinal Business Database.  

Career and education 

Professor Miranda has edited two NBER books in the areas of entrepreneurship and innovation. He recently stepped down as the president of the board of the Southeast Ministry’s adult education and job readiness program designed to address the root causes of poverty, illiteracy, and violence in Washington DC to relocate to Leipzig, Germany. 

  • Ph.D., Economics, American University, Washington, D.C., 2004 
  • M.A., Economics, American University, Washington, D.C., 05/01/1997
  • B.A., Economics, Universidad Autonoma Madrid, Madrid, Spain, 03/01/1993
  • Areas of Expertise: business dynamics, job creation and growth, entrepreneurship, high growth firms, innovation, business finance, synthetic data

Eren Ocakverdi

Eren Ocakverdi headshot.

Eren Ocakverdi is an independent researcher on Professor Akcigit’s team. He is also a research and analytics consultant at Yapi Kredi, a bank in Turkey. Before joining the banking and finance sector, he was the head of the economic research division at the Turkish Industry and Business Association (TUSIAD).

Ocakverdi’s area of expertise is time series modeling and forecasting, a topic he regularly delivers seminars and lectures on and contributes to through research projects. He holds BSc and MSc degrees in Management Engineering from Istanbul Technical University (ITU). Find out more about his career and achievements here on LinkedIn.

Raman Singh Chhina

Raman Singh Chhina headshot.

Raman Singh Chhina is a PhD student in the Department of Economics at University of Chicago. He obtained his Master’s degree from the University of Edinburgh and has subsequently worked at the MacCaLM project in the U.K. and the National Bureau of Economic Research in the U.S.

Chhina’s research focuses on firm dynamics and the macroeconomic implications of rising inequality. In 2023, he received the Pearson Institute Research and Innovation Grant and is involved in multiple on-going research projects.

Nicolas Serrano Velarde

Nicolas Serrano Velarde headshot.

Nicolas Serrano-Velarde is an Associate Professor in the Department of Finance at Bocconi University in Milan, Italy. He is also a Research Professor at the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH) and a Research Affiliate at the Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research (IGIER). He obtained his Master's degree from Sciences Po Paris and his PhD in Economics from the European University Institute. After completing his PhD, Serrano-Velarde worked as a postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Business Taxation at Oxford University.


Serrano-Velarde's research interests lie at the intersection of corporate finance and industrial policy. His approach aims to understand firm dynamics through the interconnected lens of ownership and competition, credit, and innovation. A common theme connects his work: how firms respond to their legal and competitive environment, and how policymakers can alter those environments to generate better outcomes for society. His research has been published in top peer-reviewed economic and finance journals, such as the Journal of Political Economy, the Review of Economic Studies, the Review of Financial Studies, and the Journal of Financial Economics.

Awards and impact

Serrano-Velarde has received multiple grants to develop his research agenda and an award for teaching excellence in the Bocconi PhD Program. His research has been featured in several prestigious publications, including the Economist, the Economic Report of the U.S. President, and the World Bank's Doing Business report. In 2014, he won the 4nations cup, a European contest in which top finance academics determine the best young finance scholars.

Seyit Cilasun

Seyit Cilasun headshot.

Seyit Mümin Cılasun is Professor of Economics at TED University in Ankara, Turkey. He is also head of the Applied Data Science Program, a research fellow at the Economic Research Forum (ERF), and a consultant at the World Bank. He received his Ph.D. degree in Economics from the Middle East Technical University in 2009. He worked as a faculty member at Atılım University between 2002 and 2017. In 2017, he transferred to the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey as an academic advisor. He worked as an economist and deputy executive director at the Structural Economic Research Department of CBRT from 2018 to 2021. He joined the TED University Department of Economics as a faculty member in November 2021. 


Professor Cilasun’s research interests are applied microeconometrics, labor markets, development economics, and industrial organization. His current research agenda mainly focuses on firm dynamics. 

Publications and awards

Professor Cilasun has publications in the Journal of Development Economics, European Economic Review, Small Business Economics, Review of Industrial Organization, Social Indicators Research, and Applied Economics. He served as associate editor and managing editor of the Central Bank Review. He received the best doctoral thesis award from the Turkish Economic Association and the first prize in the field of Education in the Big Data for Refugees (D4R) competition organized jointly by Türk Telekom, Boğaziçi University and UNHCR in 2019.

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