Jared Bernstein is an American economist currently serving as Chief Economist and Economic Policy Adviser to Vice President Joseph Biden in the Obama Administration. Bernstein is considered to represent a progressive, pro-labor perspective.
Bernstein graduated from the Manhattan School of Music with Bachelors Degree in Fine Arts where he studied double bass with Orin O'Brien. He earned a Masters Degree in Social Work from the Hunter School of Social Work, and from Columbia University he received a Masters Degree in Philosophy and Ph.D. in Social Welfare.
Bernstein's areas of interest include "federal, state and international economic policies, specifically the middle-class squeeze, income inequality and mobility, trends in employment and earnings, low-wage labor markets, poverty, and international comparisons." He is known as a critic of free trade agreements such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). He has taught at Howard University, Columbia University and New York University. In 1992, he was hired at the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), a think tank with ties to organized labor and a focus on issues affecting low- and middle-income workers. From 1995-1996, he served in the Department of Labor as Deputy Chief Economist. He then returned to the EPI, where he was senior economist and director of the Living Standards Program when selected by Biden.