LSE motto

LSE people

Inspirational alumni, staff and students in LSE’s history and on the world stage

LSE alumni and faculty members have been awarded 18 Nobel Prizes in economics, peace and literature. At least 40 past or present world leaders have studied at the School. 

B R Ambedkar in 1950. Wikimedia Commons. By Unknown author -, Public Domain,
LSE alumnus and founding father of the Indian constitution, B R Ambedkar in 1950. Wikimedia Commons. By Unknown author, Public Domain

From our founders to the present day, discover more about some of the people through history who have played important roles within LSE and across the world.

Notable alumni

Meet just a few of our notable alumni from around the world.

B R Ambedkar
Architect of the Indian constitution

Helen Mayelle
International UN volunteer

Kristalina Georgieva
Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund

Ruth Porat
Chief Financial Officer of Alphabet Inc

David Rockefeller

Minouche Shafik
LSE Vice Chancellor and President 2017-2023

George Soros
Business magnate

Ursula von der Leyen
President of the European Commission

Find out about other LSE alumni across decades, industries, geographies and globally-significant themes who are enacting change in our world.

We also have a number of famous fictional alumni! 

World leaders


The Rt Hon Errol Walton Barrow (1920-1987) 
BSc (Econ) 1950
Prime Minister 1962-1966; 1966-1976; 1986-1987.

Mia Mottley (1965-)
LLB 1986
First female Prime Minister 2018-present.


Rt Hon Pierre Trudeau (1919-2000)
Research Fee Student 1947-1948
Prime Minister 1968-1979; 1980-1984.

The Rt Hon Kim Campbell (1947-)
PhD student 1973
Prime Minister June-November 1993.

Jacques Parizeau (1930-2015)
PhD student 1955
Premier of Quebec 1994-1995.


Yang Jiechi (1950-)
General Course 1975
Foreign Minister 2007-2013.


Dr Pumarejo Alfonso Lopez (1886-1959)
Occasional Registration 1932-1933
President 1934-1938, 1942-1945.

Juan Manuel Santos (1951-)
MSc Economics 1975
President 2010-2018.


HM Queen Margrethe II (1940-)
Occasional student 1965
Queen 1972-2024.


The Hon Dame Eugenia Charles (1919-2005)
LLM 1949
First female Prime Minister 1980-1995.


The Rt Hon Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara (1920-2004)
Diploma Econ and Social Admin 1962
Prime Minister 1970-1992; President 1994-2000.


Dr Alexander Stubb (1986-)
PhD International Relations 1999
Prime Minister 2014-2015; President 2024-present.


Dr Kwame Nkrumah (1909-1972)
PhD (did not complete) 1946 
First President 1960-1966.

Hon Dr Hilla Limann (1934-1998)
BSc (Econ)1960
President 1979-1981.

John Atta Mills (1944-2012)
LLM 1967-68
President 2009-2012.


George Papandreou (1952-)
MSc Sociology 1977
Prime Minister 2009-2011.

Professor Konstantinos Simitis (1936-)
Research Fee Student 1961-1963
Prime Minister 1996-2004.


Shri KR Narayanan (1921-2005)
BSc (Econ) 1945-1948
President 1997-2002.


Moshe Sharett (1894 -1965)
BSc (Econ) 1924
Prime Minister 1954-1955.


Professor Romano Prodi (1939-)
Research Fee Student 1962-1963
Prime Minister 1996-1998; President of the European Commission 1999-2004;
Prime Minister 2006-2008.


The Rt Hon Michael Manley (1924-1997)
BSc (Econ) 1949
Prime Minister 1972-1980; 1989-1992.

The Rt Hon P J Patterson (1935-)
LLB 1963
Premier 1992-2006.


Tarō Asō (1940-)
Occasional Student 1966
Prime Minister 2008-2009, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance 2012-2021.


Dr Bisher Khasawneh (1969-)
LLM 1996, PhD Law 2007
Prime Minister 2020-present.


Jomo Kenyatta (c1894-1978)
ADA 1936
First President 1964-1978.

Mwai Kibaki (1931-2022)
BSc Economics 1959
President 2002-2013.


Anote Tong (1952-)
MSc Sea-Use Group 1988
President 2003-2016.


The Hon Sir Veerasamy Ringadoo (1920-2000)
LLB 1948
First President of Mauritius March-June 1992.

The Hon Dr Navinchandra Ramgoolam (1947-)
LLB 1990
Prime Minister 1995-2000; 2005-2014.


Sher Bahadur Deuba (1946-)
Research Student International Relations 1988-1989
Prime Minister 1995-1997; 2001-2003; 2004-2005; 2017-18; 2021-2022.


Harmodio Arias (1886 -1962)
Occasional Student, 1909-1911
President 1932-1936. 


Pedro Gerardo Beltran Espanto (1897-1979)
BSc (Econ) 1918
Prime Minister 1959-1961.

Beatriz Merino (1947-)
LLM 1972
First female Prime Minister 2003.


Marek Belka (1952-)
Summer School 1990
Prime Minister 2004-2005.


Goh Keng Swee (1918-2010)
BSc Economics 1951; PhD Economics 1956
Deputy Prime Minister 1973-1985.

Tharman Shanmugaratnam (1957-)
BSc Economics 1981
Deputy Prime Minister 2011-2019; President 2023-present.

St Lucia

The Rt Hon John Compton (1925-2007)
LLB 1952
Premier 1967-1979; First Prime Minister 1979; 1982-1996; 2006-2007.


Yu Kuo-Hwa (1914-2000)
Composition fee student 1947-1949
Premier 1984-1989.

Tsai Ing-wen (1956-)
PhD Law 1984
First female President 2016- present.


Thanin Kraivichien (1927-)
LLB 1953
Prime Minister 1976-1977.


Sylvanus Olympio (1902-1963)
B Commerce 1925
Prime Minister 1958-1961; First President 1961-1963.


Lord Attlee (1883-1967)
Lecturer in social science and administration, 1912-1923
Prime Minister, 1945-1951. 

Nobel Prize winners

A total of 18 LSE alumni or staff members have been awarded Nobel Prizes

2016: Juan Manuel Santos Calderón 
Nobel Peace Prize

2016: Oliver Hart 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (jointly)

2010: Christopher Pissarides 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (jointly)

2008: Paul Krugman 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences

2007: Leonid Hurwicz 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (jointly)

2001: George Akerlof 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (jointly)

1999: Robert Mundell 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences  

1998: Amartya Sen 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences

1991: Ronald Coase 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences

1990: Merton Miller 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences

1979: Sir Arthur Lewis 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (jointly)

1977: James Meade 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (jointly)

1974: Friedrich Hayek 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (jointly)

1972: Sir John Hicks 
Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (jointly)

1959: Lord Noel-Baker 
Nobel Peace Prize

1950: Ralph Bunche 
Nobel Peace Prize

1950: Bertrand Russell 
Nobel Prize in Literature

1925: George Bernard Shaw 
Nobel Prize in Literature

Read more about our Nobel Prize winners.

Our founders

A quartet of Fabian Society members decided to found LSE. Who were they?

Sidney Webb (1859-1947) 
Instead of going to university he entered the Civil Service, attended university extension courses and studied for the bar. This shaped his vision for education and for LSE.

Beatrice Webb (1858-1943) 
A pioneer of social research and policymaking, Beatrice worked on Charles Booth's enquiry, published a Minority Report on the Poor Law, and lectured at LSE on trade unionism and employment.

Graham Wallas (1858-1932) 
A school teacher turned politial psycholgist, he declined to become LSE's first Director but did deliver the School’s first political science lectures.

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) 
The only LSE person to have won both the Nobel Prize for Literature and an Oscar – for his screen play of Pygmalion.

Charlotte Payne-Townshend (later Shaw) (1857-1943)
Although she was not a founder, her financial support was crucial for the survival of the early School. One of her donations funded what is now known as the Shaw Library. It's named after her - and not her famous husband.

Find out more about our founders.

Leading women

With a female founder, funder and students from the very beginning, here are just some of the leading women from LSE's history who achieved significant "firsts":

Alice E Murray and Amy Harrison
The first women to be awarded doctorates at LSE in 1903. Alice on the history of commercial and financial relations between England and Ireland, and Amy on the history of factory legislation.

Ellen Marianne Leonard
The first female President of the LSE Students’ Union in 1907. 

Mithan Tata 
One of the earliest women to be called the Bar, Mithan later became the first female Professor of Law in India.

Lilian Knowles
The first female Professor of Economic History in the UK in 1921. 

Edith Abbott 
The first American woman to be appointed the dean of a graduate school in the United States in 1924.

Maureen Colquhoun
The first openly gay woman in UK parliament.

Eugenia Charles
Dominica's first female Prime Minister in 1980.

Meet more of LSE's leading women through history.