Herrera Lane, Felipe (1922–1996)

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Herrera Lane, Felipe (1922–1996)

Felipe Herrera Lane (b. 17 June 1922; d. 17 September 1996), Chilean economist, lawyer, author, and leader of international organizations. Born in Valparaiso, Herrera studied law and philosophy at the University of Chile and then economics at the London School of Economics. He returned to teach economics and political economy at the University of Chile from 1947 to 1958, spending 1950–1951 teaching at the London School of Economics. At the same time, he served in various Chilean ministries, acted as a general director of the Chilean Central Bank from 1953 to 1958, and was a member of the boards of governors of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, where he acted as executive director from 1958 to 1960. Herrera's most important achievement was his involvement as one of the principal figures in the conception and establishment of the Inter-American Development Bank in 1959. He was elected first president of the new institution in 1960 and continued in that position until 1971. As one in charge of implementing the high ideals conceived for the bank, Herrera played the instrumental role in determining the initial thrust of development programs for Latin America. After his resignation, he returned to Chile to pursue his academic career. He briefly became involved in the Socialist politics of his past (he was defeated in a bid to become rector of the University of Chile in 1972), but ultimately rejected a cabinet position in the Salvador Allende government in 1973. During much of the 1970s and 1980s, Herrera acted as executive of various international organizations, promoted international and Latin American development programs, and authored numerous books. In 1997 the Inter-American Development Bank in Washington, D.C., held a ceremony to unveil a statue of Herrera at its world headquarters. In Santiago a cultural foundation was established in his honor.

See alsoEconomic Development; Inter-American Development Bank (IDB); International Monetary Fund (IMF).


Felipe Herrera Lane, Vigencia del Banco Interamericano de Desarrollo: Antecedentes y perspectivas (1982) and El Banco Interamericano de Desarrollo: Experiencias y reflexiones (1989).

Additional Bibliography

Major Works

Seminario cultura y desarrollo: Homenaje a Felipe Herrera. Santiago: La Fundación, 1998.

Pluralismo, sociedad, y democracia: La riqueza de la diversidad. Santiago: La Fundación, 2002.

Secondary Works

Castedo, Leopoldo. Fundamentos culturales de la integración latinoamericana. Caracas: Dolmen Ediciones, 1999.

                                    J. David Dressing

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Herrera Lane, Felipe (1922–1996)

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