- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 13, 2015

MADRID (AP) - French economist Esther Duflo has been awarded Spain’s Princess of Asturias social science prize for her studies in poverty in developing countries.

A statement from organizers Wednesday said the work of Paris-born Duflo, 42, -a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology - had profoundly changed strategies for education, health and employment in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

She is director of the institute’s Poverty Action Lab.

The 50,000-euro ($64,330) award is one of eight Asturias prizes handed out yearly by a foundation named for Crown Princess Leonor. Others categories include the arts, sport and scientific research.

The awards, formerly called the Prince of Asturias prizes, were renamed last year after Leonor became crown princess when her father Felipe took the throne following the abdication of former King Juan Carlos.

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