Sir Hans Wolfgang Singer (29 November 1910 – 26 February 2006) was a development economist best known for the Singer-Prebisch thesis, which states that the terms of trade move against producers of primary products. He is one of the primary figures in heterodox economics.
Sir Hans Singer was Emeritus Professor of the University of Sussex and had been Professorial Fellow of the Institute of Development Studies since 1969. Prior to that he held a variety of posts in the United Nations, including Director of the Economic Division of the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) and Director of the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) and was closely involved in the Bretton Woods Agreement and the building of the post-war global financial institutional framework.
His many books, journal articles and reports, as director of various field missions, constitute a unique record of economic development, especially the divide between rich and poor countries, across most of the 20th Century. Of most unusual interest are the unpublished lectures and festschrift for his 85th birthday in 1995 (see publications list below).
The Institute of Social Studies awarded its honorary doctorate to Hans Singer in 1977.