José Cuesta is a development economist with a Ph.D. in economics from Oxford University. He is an affiliated professor at Georgetown University's McCourt School of Public Policy. Cuesta was previously an assistant professor in development economics at the Institute of Social Studies in the Netherlands. He also worked as a research economist and social sector specialist for the Inter-American Development Bank, and as an economist for the United Nations Development Programme in Honduras.
Cuesta's research interests revolve around poverty and conflict economics, specifically the distributive analysis of social policies; intra-household allocation; social protection and labor distortions. He also studies the interaction between poverty, conflict and culture. A Spanish national, Cuesta has experience from a number of countries in South America, Asia and Africa.